The MPAA rated Bruce Almighty (2003)
PG-13 for language, sexual content and some crude humor.
Ever feel like your prayers arent answered? That no
one up there is listening? Bruce Nolan (Jim Carrey) does.
The field reporter for a Buffalo TV station has been passed
over for a promotion, beat up by a gang of thugs after helping
a homeless guy, and handed yet another comic relief story
for the nightly news broadcast.
Rather than make note of the good things in his life, the
middle-aged journalist whines incessantly about the lack of
heavenly intervention on his behalf. Fed up with the complaining,
God (Morgan Freeman) gives Bruce the chance to trade places
with him and see if he can do a better job. Only two rules
apply. He cant reveal who he is and he cant mess
with anyones free will. With all encompassing power
placed in his hands, Bruce, rather gleefully, sets out to
take care of the world.
Unfortunately, the extent of the world for him is a narrow
cross-section of New York State, and the person he cares most
about is himself. As Supreme Being, he is neither forgiving
nor wise. Instead, the self-centered Almighty seems interested
only in getting revenge on his co-worker Evan Baxter (Steve
Carell) and enjoying some sexual gratification with his live-in
girlfriend, Grace (Jennifer Anniston).
The new appointee is also finding the position a little more
demanding than he expected. When unanswered prayers start
piling up, he looks for a quick push-button solution to the
human ills so he can get on with the fun part of ruling the
universe. But resolving the heartfelt pleas of some and the
unsatisfied grumbles of others takes a toll on the self-absorbed
sovereign. Unable to see past his own desires, his earthly
relationship with Grace suffers along with his ability to
make sound judgment calls for the benefit of mankind.
As Bruce struggles to rule the universe, he discovers a kind
and patient Deity that hears and answers prayers. Learning
to see those answers and heed them makes a big difference
in his mortal outlook.
Returning to his comedic roots, Carrey attacks the role of
Bruce Nolan with an irreverent and cheeky humor reminiscent
of his pre-Majestic days. For some viewers, his flippant attitude
toward Deity may cause discomfort. Parents, regardless of
their religious beliefs, may also lose faith in the script
that includes a repeated sexual hand gesture and a host of
profanities (including a strong sexual term). These issues,
along with an evening of passion and brief violence, makes
Bruce Almighty more devilish than divine for family entertainment.