The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is likable if unspectacular
Loosely based on the short story by James Thurber, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, stars Ben Stiller as Mitty, a photo curator for Life magazine. A vivid daydreamer, Mitty faces the task of his life as he is charged with finding the front page photo for the last hard copy issue of the iconic magazine that is going digital.
The problem is that the negative is nowhere to be found. This sends Mitty off on the adventure of a lifetime – one that allows him to find himself and find some meaning in life beyond work and daydreams. The movie features Shirley MacLaine, Sean Penn and Patton Oswalt. Kristen Wiig is the love interest and part of the inspiration.
The film is entirely too predictable. No, Mitty couldn’t have found the negative sooner, even if it would have been good reasoning that would have led him to it, because it would have made for a really short film.
Most of it is well set up though it often hovers between improbable and impossible. As a character, Mitty is well fleshed out, and Stiller does his good impersonation of an everyman. The parallel between Space Oddity and what beginning a relationship is was nice.
Mostly, the Secret Life of Walter Mitty begs the question, “What should you do if your daydreams are better than your reality?” The film ends leaving the viewer to wish that life could only be as easy as it is in the movies.
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty opens in wide release on Dec. 25, 2013.
See Romney's Review of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty