Reviewer's Rating 2 out of 5  
Joe Somebody (2002)
PG

Your enjoyment of "Joe Somebody" will depend on a single factor: are you a fan of Tim Allen? Because if you're not, then this comedic office revenge tale hasn't got much else to offer.

Allen is Joe Scheffer, a mild-mannered single dad who comes face-to-face with office bully Mark McKinney (Warburton) on Bring Your Daughter to Work Day.

Following an argument over a parking space, McKinney decks him, but rather than walk away, an embarrassed Joe challenges McKinney to a rematch.

Resolving to evolve from doormat to confident guy, Joe begins self-defence lessons and takes more notice of his precocious daughter.

As a result, he piques the interest of a female work colleague (Bowen), a model of womanly perfection that only exists in celluloid.

Allen is an inoffensive presence, a Silk Cut Ultra leading man, but then it's that kind of film. The sort of feeble redemption story Hollywood often palms off on the film-going public.

You know the one: decent guy, gets stepped on, learns something (karate, the Lambada, whatever), gets the girl, and lives happily ever after.

That's all well and good, but such a formulaic premise needs an inspired performance to lift it above the pack.

There are a couple of chuckles to be had from James Belushi, playing a failed B-movie action star who teaches Joe to jab and uppercut.

And Warburton, as any Seinfeld fan will know, is a fine comedian (he played Elaine's deadpan boyfriend, Puddy).

Unfortunately, no one can save Allen's "Somebody" from being a nobody.

End Credits

Director: John Pasquin

Writer: John Scott Shepherd

Stars: Tim Allen, Patrick Warburton, Hayden Panettiere, Julie Bowen, James Belushi, Kelly Lynch, Greg Germann

Genre: Comedy

Length: 98 minutes

Cinema: 29 November 2002

Country: USA

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