When I saw that “Date Night” stars Tina Fey and Steve Carrell, two of my favorite actors, I couldn’t contain my excitement. Both absolutely dominate the NBC Thursday night lineup, so I expected them to bring a lot of their comedic talents to the table.
Once I learned that Fey hadn’t been involved in the writing process, which is disappointing when you consider the great work she’s done as a writer for ‘30 Rock’ and the hit movie ‘Mean Girls,’ my initial excitement was dampened. Another concern came with the realization that Shawn Levy, who has worked on lackluster family films such as ‘Cheaper by the Dozen’ and ‘Night at the Museum,’ was the director. However, it became apparent within a few minutes of the film that it definitely is not a family flick.
The movie begins with Phil (Carrell) and Claire Foster (Fey) lamenting that their marriage has become boring and stale from the burdens involved with raising their children. Phil decides that for their next date night, they should do something special to rekindle their former excitement. Sure enough, plenty of crazy events unfold reminding both of them of their attraction they have for each other.
After taking the reservation from a no-show at a hip new restaurant, the two are mixed up with another couple that has stolen some damaging information about the city’s district attorney. Things become even more complicated when they realize that the goons chasing after them are actually cops. They decide that they can’t go to the police for help and take matters into their own hands.
They travel all around New York City trying to put the piece together all of the information about the blackmail the couple who they were mistaken for committed. A high-speed car chase, a strip club, and a shirtless cameo by Mark Wahlberg all add to the adventure the Fosters experience while attempting to get themselves off the hook.
“Date Night” had everything I wanted. The action sequences were very impressive, which surprised me since it hadn’t been advertised as a fast-paced film. The comedy was great, the jokes were all funny, and it was apparent that the cast had a great time filming. You might be thrown off by some of the previews that focus on more of the family-friendly aspects of the film, but trust me when I say they don’t really do the film justice.