Blu-ray Review: Liar Liar (25th Anniversary Edition)

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When you’re attempting to sell a script, a screenwriter is told that they need to have an elevator pitch. The idea is if you’re ever stuck in an elevator with a studio executive, you can get them hooked on the script in a few words. When the doors open on the next floor, the studio executive will demand the script and hold all calls while they read it in one sitting. Liar Liar must have had the perfect elevator pitch. A young boy’s birthday wish is for his father to only tell the truth for one day. The father is a scummy lawyer. The real clincher is declaring the dad would be played by Jim Carrey. Right before the ding of the doors open, all you need to say is “then we go pricing homes in Malibu.” Liar Liar: 25th Anniversary Edition shows how a simple concept can click when Jim Carrey is added to the mix.

Max Reede (Dennis the Menace Strikes Again‘s Justin Cooper) can’t deal with his dad. Fletcher Reede (Jim Carrey) is a lawyer without any scruples and puts his career ahead his son. Fletcher is so focused on his life and coming up with great lies to move up the ladder that he skips his son’s birthday party. Dad had already lied about why he had to skip taking him to a pro wrestling event. The son when given his birthday wish, desires his dad can go a day without lying to him. The wish becomes immediately true when after sleeping with his boss (The Lair of the White Worm‘s Amanda Donohoe), he gives her a proper rating for their hook up. Max’s wish couldn’t have come at a worse time since Fletcher is opening a high profile divorce case involving Samantha Cole (Bride of Chucky‘s Jennifer Tilly). What Fletcher doesn’t know is his ex-wife (NewsRadio’s Maura Tierney) is about to move cross country with her new boyfriend (Princess Bride’s Carey Elwes) and take Max with them. Will spending a day only telling the truth going to set him free or lead to the demise of his life?

When Liar Liar came out in 1997, Jim Carrey was riding high at the box office with Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, The Mask, Dumb and Dumber, Batman Forever and Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls. The previous year he’d made dark The Cable Guy a $`100 million hit. He was such a huge star that reportedly nearly half of Liar Liar‘s $45 million budget was his salary. Carrey is worth every penny since he is the special effects budget with his facial gestures and various freakouts. I can’t imagine anyone else at this time turning this film into a hit – even George Clooney. Carrey paid off for the studio since Liar Liar raked in $300 million at the worldwide box office. The film holds up as a comedy after all these years. Part of it is a solid simple premise and the knowledge that a lawyer stuck telling the truth remains a hilarious concept. Jim Carrey is at the top of his game playing the lawyer that sees his son’s wish as his curse. Who else can beat themselves up so thoroughly like Carrey? He should have been in Fightclub. Liar Liar: 25th Anniversary Edition is reason to laugh without blowing out any candles.

The video is 1.85:1 anamorphic. The 1080p transfer lets you enjoy all the weirdness Jim Carrey expresses. The audio is 5.1 DTS-HD MA Surround. There’s also a 2.0 DTS-HD MA Stereo in case you don’t have a surround sound system hooked into the Blu-ray player. The movie is subtitled in English.

Audio Commentary with Director Tom Shadyac goes deep into how he put things together. He talks about tone questions especially when it comes to working with Jim Carrey who liked to do takes in various ways.

In Session: Looking Back At The Writing of Liar Liar (21:23) has Paul Guay and Stephen Mazur talk about how much trouble they had pitching such a great concept. Years later, they are meeting a studio executive at Imagine who said they were looking for a lawyer comedy. Producer Brian Grazer wanted this once unwanted project. They do talk about how they had to change the court case from murder to divorce since murder isn’t often funny. There’s a great tale of when Hugh Grant was interested and why he fell off the project.

The Case For Comedy: Looking Back At The Cast of Liar Liar (18:41) has Swoozie Kurtz and Jennifer Tilly. They talk about working with Jim Carrey. He had no problem doing numerous takes with more and more insane responses. Tilly talks about the time Carrey had her grab her ass during a take. Carrey was also giving his cast little one liners. They also talk about having to not break up during takes.

Deleted Scene (3:53) is a courtroom case where Carrey comes up with an alternate view of how his client didn’t mug an old guy at a teller machine. This might be the roots of Better Call Saul. This would have been the opening to the film with Randall “Tex” Cobb as the mugger.

Outtakes (1:34) includes bloopers, blown lines and prop failures.

Bridging the Comedy Chasm (16:08) has Carrey declare the film is about Mendacity. This seems to be the original making of special. Jim Carrey talks about how he looks human in the movie.

Theatrical Trailer (2:16) perfectly sets up the film with the kid calling his dad a liar and not a lawyer.

Shout! Select presents Liar Liar: 25th Anniversary Edition. Directed by Tom Shadyac. Screenplay by Paul Guay & Stephen Mazur. Starring Jim Carrey, Maura Tierney, Jennifer Tilly, Swoosie Kurtz, Amanda Donahoe and Justin Cooper. Rated: PG-13. Running Time: 86 minutes. Blu-ray Release: January 19, 2022.

Joe Corey is the writer and director of "Danger! Health Films" currently streaming on Night Flight and Amazon Prime. He's the author of "The Seven Secrets of Great Walmart People Greeters." This is the last how to get a job book you'll ever need. He was Associate Producer of the documentary "Moving Midway." He's worked as local crew on several reality shows including Candid Camera, American's Most Wanted, Extreme Makeover Home Edition and ESPN's Gaters. He's been featured on The Today Show and CBS's 48 Hours. Dom DeLuise once said, "Joe, you look like an axe murderer." He was in charge of research and programming at the Moving Image Archive.