Netflix Review: I Love You Phillip Morris

I have no idea what I expected going into this movie, but this movie was not at all what I expected.  (I think I just blew my own mind with that sentence.)  I Love You Phillip Morris is a love story.  It is a dark comedy.  It is even based off of a real life story.

Steve (Jim Carrey) begins his life by living a lie. He is a church going family man who is an officer of the law. He also happens to be flaming gay and boinks men in his spare time.  This film really sets the tone by showing you Steve having unenthusiastic hate sex with his wife (missionary, of course) juxtaposed with a passionate fuckfest (doggy-style, of course) with an unidentified male.

Steve seems to be fine living this life, until one day he is in a massive car accident and he decided that life is too short and he is going to be the real Steve from now on.  Right before this is a simultaneously haunting and hilarious scene in which he tracks down his real mother only to realize that he was the middle child that she got rid of him and kept his older and younger siblings.  Now that would be traumatizing.

Steve moves to Florida, gets a boyfriend and lives a lavish life of luxury.  There is one issue with this, in that in order to live this life he perpetrates countless frauds.  Of course, he gets caught and ends up in the big house, which is where he meets Phillip Morris (played by an extremely effeminate Ewan McGregor).  The rest of the movie is the love story, and incredible life story, of these two men.

The first thing about this movie that made me go “What?!?” was that it was a true story.  So much that happens in this movie was so over the top and insane, I simply thought I was watching excellent fiction.  Steve repeatedly breaks out of prison.  Over and over again Steve pulls off enormous cons that just should not work.

Thanks for the drinks! Of course we will continue to talk to you for the rest of the evening...

A running gag occurs when Steve gets a new cell mate that he is showing around.  For every “service” you can get in prison, you can either pay for it, “or you can suck his dick.”   For example, “Tiny can get you any porno mag you want.  You can either pay him ten bucks per mag, or you can suck his dick.”  or “If you want steak for dinner, you can pay Spike fifteen bucks, or you can suck his dick.”  All said nonchalantly by Jim Carrey.  I only bring this up, because I think it would be absolutely hilarious if a real conversation like this ever does happen in prison.

The second aspect of this movie that blew me away was the relationship between Jim Carrey and Ewan McGregor.  Number one, I am glad that we are at a point in our society that a love story between two men can be depicted like this.  I believed that Jim and Ewan were in love.  Their make out scenes are passionate and believable.  They talk and act with all of the lust that you would expect from having two men in a relationship.  That is what makes the story so powerful.  Steve is doing everything that he does because he loves Phillip so much.

This is not a movie for everyone.  It has dark humor and the main protagonist is a criminal, a con man and a liar.  That being said, I would recommend that you watch it.  I was drawn in the entire time with what would happen next.  Nothing about this movie was conventional.  Even the ending was completely unexpected.  But I must admit that I really liked it.  I Love You Phillip Morris was a great time for me.

Have you seen I Love You Phillip Morris?  What did you think about it?  Let us know in the comments below.

~Ryan Lynch

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