When good-hearted dreamer Larry Daley is hired as night watchman
at the Museum of Natural History, he soon discovers that an
ancient Egyptian tablet brings all the exhibits to life after
the sun sets. Suddenly, Larry finds himself face-to-face with
a frisky T. Rex skeleton, tiny armies of Romans and cowboys
and a mischievous monkey who taunts him to breaking point.
But with the help of President Teddy Roosevelt, Larry may
just figure out a way to control the chaos and become a hero
in his son's eyes...
at the Museum is one of those family movies that comes
along every once in a while. It's a film that has something
for everyone, ensuring that the whole family really will be
able to sit together and be engrossed for the film's duration.
Stiller plays Larry Daley, a man who wants to prove to his
son that he can be a good father. But, he has a lot to live
up to as his son's new Step-Dad is a squeaky clean man with
a high paid job. With debts mounting, Larry temporarily ditches
his dreams of making it big one day, with one of his crazy
business ideas, and takes the only job he can get - night
watchman at the Museum of Natural History. The job looks simple
enough, until he discovers that once the visitors go home,
and the sun goes down, the exhibits come to life. His job
is to ensure that all the rooms are locked before sun rise
and everything is back in its rightful place.
is perfect as Larry - getting the balance right to make you
totally believe in his character. Robin Williams is, as ever,
wonderful in the role of Teddy Roosevelt and only once hams
his part up.
are some great cameos here. There's Steve Coogan and Owen
Wilson as the tiny diorama figures of Octavius the Roman and
Jedediah the cowboy. Then there's Dick Van Dyke, Mickey Rooney
and Bill Cobbs who are wonderful as the old night watchmen.
In fact the only let down, for me, was Ricky Gervais. Yes,
The Office was hilarious, but he really should move
on. All we get out of him here is a slightly watered down
version of David Brent.
it is the small monkey that steals the show. There are some
fantastic scenes between Stiller and the monkey which will
have kids and adults laughing like hyenas. The monkey slapping
scene has to be one of the funniest human/animal moments ever
committed to film.
do wish the studios would stop insisting on releasing what
are essentially single disc DVDs across two discs and charging
£25 for the privilege. There is no way you can tell
me that all the material wouldn't have fitted onto a single
include audio commentary with director Shawn Levy (which is
pretty entertaining - certainly worth a listen); and an audio
commentary with the writers (don't expect to learn much here
- it's mainly banter. Although it's quite funny in parts.
I especially loved their attempt at the British accent and
the Lenny Kravitz outburst). On disc two we get Deleted
and Extended Scenes (16-and-a-half min featurette with
optional commentary from the director); Bringing the Museum
to Life (six min look at the effects); Blooper Reel
(5-and-a-half mins of mistakes); Monkey Business (5
min look at working with a real monkey); Making of Night
at the Museum (11 min featurette that goes behind the
scenes); McFly Music Video; Theatrical Teaser;
Theatrical Trailer; and Rexy (an interactive
game where you have to place the bones in the right place
on screen. Once finished it takes you to another screen and
offers a left or right option to choose. I don't know if our
disc was faulty but it didn't matter which we chose - or even
if we didn't touch anything - it would still take us back
to an earlier menu.
enough, this disc also manages to squeeze five audio tracks
onto the first disc - including 5.1, DTS, a narrator for the
visually impaired, and the two previously mentioned audio
movie is a lot of laughs, and is certainly worth watching
at least twice to get the subtle references before everything
comes alive. This is certainly a film worth adding to your
collection. The only let down was the price. If this has been
knocked out on a single disc for £20 it would have easily
scored at least an extra mark.