Jim Carrey: An era of exaggerations, expressions, and eccentricity comes to an end

Dylan Barbeau, Staff Writer

Jim Carrey, the legendary Canadian actor, has recently announced his possible retirement. While it was inevitable that this day would come, it is still heartbreaking to know that an era of cinema has now come to a close. For those of you who want to cope by watching some of his classics, I have compiled some of the movies that fully encapsulated his eccentric career.

Carrey was born as James Eugene Carrey in Newmarket, Toronto, Canada on January 17th, 1962. He began doing sketch comedy in Toronto by the young age of 15. He moved to Hollywood in early 1983, and later in 1994, would get his first major role:

Ace Ventura: Pet Detective

In one of his landmark performances, Carrey places the titular detective Ace, who specializes in animal-related incidents. This movie is essentially every mainstay in Jim Carry movies while wrapped into one, including his patented overacting. The plot of this movie revolves around the kidnapping of Snowflake, a dolphin and mascot to the Miami Dolphins football team. It is also worth mentioning that this film has a sequel, Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls.

The Mask

Another iconic Carrey film, this time an adaptation of a comic book of the same name. In this one, Jim plays Stanley Ipkiss, a mild-mannered bank clerk, until he discovers a green mask that transforms him into what can only be described as Jim Carrey as a cartoon caricature of himself. He uses his new found powers to combat the mafia and get the girl of his dreams, played by Cameron Diaz. Like the previous film, this film also has a sequel, but if you think it is a good idea to watch it, DON’T.

Dumb and Dumber

Fun Fact, all three of the films mentioned so far came out in 1994, so you could say this was a good year for him. This time in a road trip movie with co-star Jeff Daniels. The plot revolves around Lloyd Christmas, Carrey’s character, traveling from Rhode Island to Aspen, Colorado in order to deliver a suitcase to a girl. However, a gang was supposed to get the case, and hijinks and mayhem ensue. This film led to both a prequel and a sequel, but only the latter features Carrey’s reprisal.

The Truman Show

Finally coming out of 1994 and going into what is likely to be the most praised movie Jim Carrey has ever started in. The movie is about the titular Truman, played by Carrey, living a normal life, but what he does not realize is that his ‘life’ is actually a T.V show set. I will link an article at the bottom of this section as it encapsulates the message of the movie far better than I could in this short section, but to summarize, this film predicted the rise of reality T.V, which is why it resonates to this day.


How the Grinch Stole Christmas

While not being the best-received film, at all, the 2000 adaptation of the iconic Dr. Suess’ book still finds relevance today. In my opinion, if Jim Carrey did not star as the titular character and the Grinch was played by anyone else, the film would be dramatically different and debatably worse. His performance, in my opinion, should have gotten Carrey the Oscar for best actor. The film follows the book somewhat, albeit with a few new scenes and humor, such as the Grinch in school.

The Sonic the Hedgehog Duology

 Closing off the list, of course I couldn’t ignore what may be his last role, Dr. Eggman in the two current Sonic movies. The first Sonic movie was pretty mundane all things considered. It is just one of those movies where a cartoon character comes into the human world (ala The Smurfs movie) and it just so happens that Sonic, voiced by Be Schwartz, is the character. With that being said it is much better than every film with that concept (which really is not saying much), but it’s still a bit disappointing considering this is the Blue Blur’s Hollywood debut. The recent sequel, however, is much more Sonic-esce with the introduction of characters such as Tails and Knuckles. Jim Carrey, in both films, is 100% not a low point. He plays Robotnik pretty well and plays off perfectly with his assistant, Agent Stone.

In conclusion, Jim Carrey has had a pretty phenomenal career overall and is sad to see him retire. Hopefully in his new life, he can live a life free of disruption knowing he had left his mark on cinema. I will end off with my favorite quote of his:

“Life opens up opportunities to you, and you either take them or you stay afraid of taking them,” said Carrey.