The Jerk

Synopsis: That wild and crazy guy, Steve Martin, makes his film-starring debut in the wacky comedy hit The Jerk. Steve portrays Navin Johnson, adopted son of a poor black sharecropper family, whose crazy inventions lead him from rags to riches and right back to rags. Along the way, he’s smitten with a lady motorcycle racer, survives a series of screwball attacks by a deranged killer, becomes a millionaire by inventing the “Opti-grab” handle for eyeglasses – and shows why he’s one of the hottest comic performers in the world.

The Jerk 5.5

Steve Martin’s debut and a huge box office success, ‘The Jerk’ is the slightly amusing story of a simpleton who leaves his beloved family to find his true calling in life. In the process, he meets a series of colourful characters, gets into trouble and finds fame and fortune.

Sounds familiar? Well that’s because you’ve seen the same thing done countless times before.

In fact, it’s really nothing exceptional story-wise, performance-wise or even with regards to the humour (which, albeit sometimes droll, is frequently corny or hammy). It’s probably worth seeing for fans of Steven Martin who haven’t already seen it, but I would be much more likely to recommend his next few films (Pennies From Heaven, Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid, The Man With Two Brains and The Lonely Guy), which showcase the comedian at his best.

Ultimately, ‘The Jerk’ is worth a rental on a slow, rainy Sunday afternoon. Or even better: catch it on TV sometime. Don’t be a jerk: don’t shell out good money for it if you don’t have to!

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