The Mask is back, Jack! Tim Avery just wants to be an animator. His wife just wants a baby. Loki just wants his mask back. These dreams all come together when Tim finds the mask, impresses everyone at work, and conceives a son… of the mask. But Loki is still after them. Can they stop Loki (and learn to raise a baby!) before it’s too late? Find out in… The Son of the Mask.
How?! Tim Avery is a giant, terrible man child. His wife is wildly successful and wants to have a baby, but he’s like, “No, I’m a giant terrible man child and I have to become a successful animator so I can make any child of mine proud of me.” So instead he sets out trying to chase his animation dreams. Things are not going well until one day his dog brings home the mask and Tim is like, dope. When a costume party at work rolls around he is scrambling for a costume and decides to use the mask. You better believe is all the rage at the party where he dances, sings, and jokes his way into everyone’s hearts. That night he makes sweet sweet mask love to his wife who obviously becomes pregnant. His boss is also pregnant… with ideas about how great it would be for Tim to make a show about the mask. Enter writer’s block. With the stressors of a new job, new kid, and no idea where the mask went, Tim is struggling to juggle all his responsibilities. His wife (still wildly successful) has to go on a trip and things start to get pretty hairy. That’s cause his dog is jealous of the baby and uses the mask it found to terrorize everyone. The baby is also totally maskified and so he gives it right back to the dog. Meanwhile I forgot to mention that Loki is looking for the mask and enters the fray trying to take everyone out. There are a bunch of silly battles and shit and eventually Loki gets the baby and demands the mask in exchange. Tim and his wife show up and Tim (as the Mask) battles Loki for his son, which ends when Tim takes his mask off and his son, feeling his paternal love, runs to him. Loki attempts one more time to kill them, but is stopped by Odin who, convinced of the joys of fatherhood, reconciles with Loki. Hooray. They all live happily ever after. THE END.
Why?! Much like Freddy Got Fingered the plot is driven by the main character man-child and his dreams of becoming an animation superstar. All the meanwhile his son wants to get rid of Tim, the dog wants to get rid of the baby, and Loki just wants the mask. This is all resolved by the end after wasting everyone’s time.
Who?! Some fun ones here. The baby is portrayed by twin actors, as is common with child actors. Neither baby went on to do anything after this which makes sense… they were babies. Bear the Dog portrayed Otis and he did appear in a few other films, but this was by far the biggest. Which also reminds me that the original Mask had one of the greatest dog actors of all time. Just another thing this sequel totally whiffed on.
What?! Of course the titular Mask is a pretty famous MacGuffin. Here more so than in the original, even, as Loki is specifically after it the entire film. Some reviews talk about extensive product placement in this film, but really the only one I remember is at the beginning of the film where Jamie Kennedy is playing a Game Boy Advance. Specifically he is playing Mark Kart: Super Circuit.
Where?! The Mask in general takes place in a fake comic book world. The large city in the original is called Edge City. In this one the mask travels to a smaller city called Fringe City, which seems generally more idyllic. So really this doesn’t take place anywhere and they did a good job making it seem that way by filming in Australia. Looks kooky. B+, even though it’s fake.
When?! Solid time setting at the beginning of the film with the whole crux of Tim’s professional career riding on the big big big Halloween party at work. From there the timeline gets crazy. He impresses so much at work that he gets a big show deal, but it appears to be a full year later and they are just presenting the very beginning of a pitch to investors. I mean his wife got pregnant, had the baby, and is leaving Tim alone with the baby and he still hasn’t even drawn the pitch for his cartoon. Nuts. A-.
I rewatched The Mask in preparation for watching this film and boy, there might not be a better example of how far you can miss the mark on a sequel. It takes about five seconds of the original film to realize that Jim Carrey was born to play the Mask and there are zero other people that could have made it all work… so of course the film replaces him with a crazy faced Jamie Kennedy, a cgi dog, and a cgi baby. At that point it was over. There was no saving the film. Even if the whole thing wasn’t also filled with juvenile humor and an odd Norse mythology throughline it would have failed spectacularly. And it did. It was actually hard to sit through. Dog poo to the moon. I think the only thing I think might be OK is the general premise of growth and paternal love involving Tim and Odin/Loki. I mean… that’s not the worst message to see put to screen. Tim does end up being a good dad. Patrick?
‘Ello everyone! We are watching a true blue modern bad movie classic. That’s rare, we usually watch exclusively garbage even by bad movie standards. You’re welcome. Let’s go!
P’s View on the Preview – Kids’ movie? Classic top 10 worst films of all time candidate we somehow didn’t watch in the first ten years of BMT? Looks like dog poo in my face? That’s right, it is (finally) time for Son of the Mask! The best fact from the preview was that someone won a cameo in The Mask 2 from Nintendo Power, but then when the movie got canceled he ended up with $5,000 instead of waiting for a part in this film … good choice. What were my expectations? Dog poo in my face. Directly in there. Mostly just because it is a kids film.
The Good – Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. There is a kernel of a maybe okay kids’ movie in this film that has absolutely nothing to do with The Mask. Loki is a trickster punished to have his essence placed into a something (specifically NOT a mask) and himself trapped on Earth as an immortal for 1000 years or whatever. And then, just as he is supposed to get his essence back, it gets placed into a cartoonist’s baby. The baby does a bunch of classic cartoon stuff, and drives the father crazy. And in the end Loki learns to love Odin again, and Odin learns to accept Loki for who he really is (awwwwww). That is basically this movie, but cut all the nonsense about The Mask out (and no dog). That’s a maybe okay movie, right? Doesn’t sounds horrible. Best Bit: Loki I think (played by Alan Cummings).
The Bad – Anything where you can tell this was a semi-aborted sequel to The Mask. I’m pretty convinced that this film was only halfway made as a sequel to The Mask, the other half being the fight between the baby and the dog which forms the core of the storyline. And I don’t mean any real offense … but Jamie Kennedy is really really bad in this. It is like he is playing someone who is really really dumb, but then this person is also supposed to be responsible and smart and talented. But he seems really dumb, and Kennedy plays the character that way for some reason. If there was an inverse Oscars for Worst Makeup in Film History this would win for The Mask makeup. Also it basically just uses the dancing baby CGI thing from The Daily Show. How did this stuff get worse in the ten years between the two films? It makes no sense. This film is really bad, I recommend it to no one. Fatal Flaw: It being a sequel to The Mask makes me sad.
The BMT – Dog poo in my face obviously. Obviously. … Obviously, right? It is, but I will maintain that there is a kernel of something in there. I was a bit surprised the storyline was as normal as it ends up being. It is somewhat coherent with a normal weird-B-story (like all the best bad kids films do). So it has that going for it. Appropriately terrible. Did it meet my expectations? Yeah, but since I would also never ever watch this film again, I bet it doesn’t really end up doing much as far as BMT history is concerned.
Roast-radamus – Solid Product Placement (What?) for the Game Boy Advance at the beginning of the film. Definitely a decent Secret Holiday Film (When?) for having their bit Halloween party at the beginning of the film. Obviously this is an A+ MacGuffin (Why?) for the titular mask, which is a solid claim to fame, especially for a kids’ film. This is obviously closest to BMT, it is appropriately insane as far as makeup and CGI is concerned.
Sequel, Prequel, Remake – I think the movie itself gives you the idea of what this should have been: a cartoon. As a matter of fact they already had a Mask cartoon in the mid-90s, presumably as they were trying to get Carrey back for a sequel. Here though you make a direct sequel to the cartoon series, but posit that after spending years as the mask, something indelible occurred with Stanley Ipkiss, he changed in some way. And so, as he happily retires the mask and settles down into some happy years as a mild-mannered bank manager, his new baby boy ends up taking on some of The Mask powers. In fact, the child has become, in some way, the son of Odin himself. In the first episode Odin comes down and offers to take his son to Asgard to be raised among a people who won’t fear his powers, but Ipkiss, using the powers of The Mask, decides to instead raise him himself and reign in his mischievous ways in an attempt to guide him to using his powers for good (much like Ipkiss in the original film eventually did). Would have been a fun concept I think, but the one thing is it has to be a cartoon! The live-action stuff only works with Carrey and he wasn’t down. Son of the Mask still works well as a title, or maybe The Mask Jr.
You Just Got Schooled – Of course in order to actually assess Son of the Mask I needed to rewatch The Mask. For those who don’t remember, Jim Carrey had an absurd 1994 where he starred in The Mask, Dumb and Dumber, and Ace Ventura in a single year. A tour de force. The Mask I remember being rather disappointed with. No longer! Having now watched it with an adult brain and without heaps of expectations the film is pretty awesome. Maybe one of the better comic book movies starring a normal person / sans superheroes? And Jim Carrey is amazing. It is an abomination that they thought they could make The Mask 2 without him … it makes no sense. He’s a living breathing cartoon character! And you replaced him with Jamie Kennedy. Just the worst. Not this film though. The Mask is great. A. Loved rewatching it.