Dinner for Schmucks

  • Directors: Jay Roach
  • Producers: Walter F Parkes, Laurie MacDonald, Jay Roach
  • Writers: David Guion, Michael Handelman, Source material, Francis Veber
  • Genres: Comedy
  • Actors: Steve Carell, Paul Rudd, Jemaine Clement, Jeff Dunham, Bruce Greenwood, Ron Livingston

Tim (Rudd) is a rising executive who “succeeds” in finding the perfect guest, IRS employee Barry (Carell), for his boss’s monthly event, a so-called “dinner for idiots,” which offers certain advantages to the exec who shows up with the biggest buffoon.

Despicable Me

  • Directors: Pierre Coffin, Chris Renaud
  • Producers: John Cohen, Janet Healy, Christopher Meledandri, Executive Producer, Robert Taylor, Nina Rappaport
  • Writers: Screenplay, Ken Daurio, Cinco Paul
  • Genres: Animation, Family
  • Actors: Steve Carell, Jason Segel, Russell Brand, Will Arnett, Kristen Wiig, Danny McBride, Miranda Cosgrove, Jack McBrayer, Mindy Kaling, Ken Jeong, Jemaine Clement, Julie Andrews, Dana Gaier, Elsie Fisher, Dave Foley

The plot revolves around the world’s #2 supervillain, Gru (Steve Carell) whose evil attempts are always thwarted by Vector (Jason Segel), the #1 supervillain. In an attempt to outdo Vector, he starts plotting to steal the moon while he hides underground in a suburban neighborhood living with his idiotic minions which look like genetically altered Corn Pops. In the teaser trailer, the Great Pyramid of Giza is shown to have been stolen and may contribute to part of Gru’s plan. His plot is jeopardized by three orphaned girls (Miranda Cosgrove, Dana Gaier, and Elsie Fisher) who see him as a prospective father. [1]

Date Night

  • Directors: Shawn Levy
  • Producers: Shawn Levy, Tom McNulty
  • Writers: Josh Klausner
  • Genres: Comedy
  • Actors: Steve Carell, Tina Fey, Mark Wahlberg, James Franco, Mark Ruffalo, Mila Kunis, Kristen Wiig, Common, Taraji P Henson

Claire and Phil Foster (Tina Fey and Steve Carell) are a suburban couple slogging through their daily lives and marriage. Even their “date nights” of dinner and a movie have become routine. To reignite the marital spark, they visit a trendy Manhattan bistro, where a case of mistaken identity hurtles them through the city at breakneck speeds, into non-stop adventure. Remembering what made them so special together, Phil and Claire take on a couple of corrupt cops, a top-level mobster—and a crazed cabbie—as their date becomes a night they’ll never forget.[2][3]

Get Smart

  • Directors: Peter Segal
  • Producers: Alex Gartner, Charles Roven, Andrew Lazar, Michael Ewing
  • Writers: Screenplay, Tom J Astle, Matt Ember, Characters, Mel Brooks, Buck Henry
  • Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Crime, Mystery, Thriller
  • Actors: Steve Carell, Anne Hathaway, Dwayne Johnson, Alan Arkin, Terence Stamp, James Caan, Ken Davitian

Maxwell Smart, an analyst for the top secret American intelligence agency CONTROL, yearns to become a field agent like his friend Agent 23 whom he idolizes. Despite scoring extremely well in the acceptance tests, Max is denied the promotion as the Chief of CONTROL feels that Max’s analytical skills are too valuable in his present assignment. This changes when CONTROL headquarters is attacked by its arch-enemy, the terrorist organization KAOS, led by a man known only as Siegfried. As a result, almost all of CONTROL’s agents’ identities are exposed, leaving only Max and Agent 99, whose recent plastic surgery has protected her identity, to pursue the culprits whilst former field operatives such as 23 are demoted to desk jobs. Max is promoted to field agent status with the codename Agent 86, but the experienced 99, viewing the naive and bumbling but overwhelmingly enthusiastic Max as an irritating encumbrance, is reluctant to partner with him.

After a series of mishaps while travelling on a commercial airliner, Max and 99 infiltrate Russia by parachute, hoping to trace KAOS’ recent acquisition of nuclear materials through its chief bombmaker, Krstic. Along the way, they are attacked by Dalip, a formidable henchman of Siegfried’s. Infiltrating a luxurious party hosted by Krstic, they trace the nuclear material (specifically Yellowcake uranium) to a KAOS nuclear weapons factory disguised as a Moscow bakery, but Max is forced to shoot Krstic when he and his men corner them. Infiltrating the bakery, Max meets with Siegfried and his second-in-command, Shtarker, only to learn that Siegfried was expecting him; a double agent has compromised his and 99’s identities. Max manages to escape capture and seal the weapons factory with explosives. During their escape, Max and 99 are confronted by Dalip; realizing that he knows Dalip through hours of listening to him on spy ‘chatter’, Max manages to persuade Dalip to spare their lives by giving him advice on how to repair his failing marriage. The Chief sends 23 to observe the clean-up of the factory, but KAOS manages to sneak the weapons out through the Moskva River, leaving 23 to report that only a bakery has been destroyed. Realizing that Max was alone during his key discoveries, CONTROL believe Max to be the double-agent; 99, who has been gradually falling in love with Max through their shared experiences, is heartbroken but takes Max into custody.

Subsequently, CONTROL becomes a laughing stock in the intelligence community, and their advice is disregarded when Siegfried transmits a threat to the United States government; pay him $200 billion or he will release the missile codes to rogue states. Whilst Max is in a CONTROL holding cell, Dalip sends him a coded message via the radio show American Top 40 revealing Siegfried’s plan; as a ‘demonstration’ he intends to detonate a nuclear device during the President’s visit to a concert performed at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. Max escapes from CONTROL and flies to Los Angeles to unite with the Chief, 99, and 23, who have flown out to persuade the President to take the KAOS threat seriously. Although 23 is skeptical, Max manages to convince 99 and the Chief that he is not the double agent. As KAOS plants the nuclear bomb in the concert hall, Max discovers trace amounts of radioactivity on Agent 23, exposing that he was lying about the bakery; revealed as the double agent, 23 takes 99 hostage and flees, forcing Max and the Chief to give pursuit. Managing to infiltrate 23’s car, Max rescues 99 and confronts 23, but in the struggle the car is set on fire and forced onto railroad tracks; 23 is killed when the car collides with a freight train. Realizing that the bomb will explode with the final notes of Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy”, Max, 99, and the Chief manage to reach the concert hall and tackle the conductor with seconds to spare, preventing the bomb from going off. During their escape, Siegfried insults Dalip once too often, previously threatening to kill his wife if he failed. Even though he has no intentions of killing her, he openly states that he would be “doing the sighted world a favor” if he did so. Finally having had enough, Dalip throws Siegfried out of their car over the side of a bridge in response. Max is hailed by the President as a hero, and walks off the stage heroically, with no one mentioning that there is a huge hole in his pants exposing his bare bottom, because it would ruin his moment. As CONTROL celebrates their success, he and 99 begin dating.

Evan Almighty

  • Directors: Tom Shadyac
  • Producers: Gary Barber, Roger Birnbaum, Michael Bostick, Neal H Moritz, Tom Shadyac
  • Writers: Joel Cohen, Alec Sokolow, Steve Oedekerk, Steve Koren, Mark O Keefe
  • Genres: Comedy, Fantasy
  • Actors: Steve Carell, Morgan Freeman, Lauren Graham, John Goodman, Wanda Sykes, Molly Shannon, Graham Phillips

Newly elected to Congress, former local television newsman Evan Baxter (Steve Carell) leaves Buffalo and shepherds his family to suburban northern Virginia, where his congressional campaign declares that he will change the world without explaining how he will do so. On his first job, he meets Marty (John Michael Higgins), Rita Daniels (Wanda Sykes), and top congressman Chuck Long (John Goodman). Soon after his arrival, strange things start to happen: animals follow Evan without any apparent reason; he grows a beard that is restored wholly every time he shaves; eight vacant lots in Evan’s neighborhood are purchased in his name; ancient tools and wood are sent to his house; and the number “614” appears everywhere he goes.

Evan soon learns that the number indicates a verse in the book of Genesis, in which God instructs Noah to build an ark. Later, God (Morgan Freeman) appears and commands Evan to build a replica of Noah’s Ark in preparation for a deluge. His family initially believes that he is having an extraordinary mid-life crisis; later, his sons suspect that something greater is occurring and assist him in the construction of the ark, although his wife Joan (Lauren Graham) does not. Reappearing, God tells Evan the flood will come at noon on September 22.

On September 22, Evan loads hundreds of animals onto the newly finished ark in front of live news crews and nearby citizens. Minutes pass wherein is no sign of rain, provoking the spectators’ scorn. When a rainstorm is briefly present, Evan takes this as a sign of the coming deluge, but is proved wrong. Joan tells Evan to leave the Ark; Evan, however, remembers Congressman Long’s dam, which he fears may burst. As he thinks on this, the dam does burst, flooding the streets. At this, all spectators and policeman board the ark, which sails down the streets of Washington D.C. on the floodwaters of the lake until it eventually lands touching the front of the Capitol. Evan then tells Long that the flood was caused by his poor design of the dam, which incites the other congressmen present to turn against Long. As investigations on Chuck Long are occurring, Evan and his family later go on a hiking trip, during which God reappears to Evan, telling him that the way to change the world is by doing one Act of Random Kindness (“ARK”) at a time.

The 40 Year Old Virgin

  • Directors: Judd Apatow
  • Producers: Judd Apatow, Shauna Robertson, Seth Rogen, Clayton Townsend, Steve Carell
  • Writers: Judd Apatow, Steve Carell
  • Genres: Comedy, Romance
  • Actors: Steve Carell, Catherine Keener, Paul Rudd, Romany Malco, Seth Rogen, Jane Lynch, Elizabeth Banks

Andy Stitzer (Steve Carell) is the eponymous 40-year-old virgin. A very well-meaning, highly neurotic, somewhat stereotypical nerd, Andy lives alone, collects action figures, enjoys video games, framed a poster of eighties rock band Asia, and his social life seems to consist of watching Survivor with his elderly neighbors.

Andy works in the stockroom at an electronics store called SmartTech. His co-workers include the affable David (Paul Rudd), who is tormented by memories of his old girlfriend Amy (Mindy Kaling); the burly Cal (Seth Rogen), a novelist and stoner; and Jay (Romany Malco), a self-styled ladies’ man. When a friend drops out of a poker game, they reluctantly invite the withdrawn Andy to join them. Andy turns out to be surprisingly good at poker due to his free-time of playing the game online, but when the conversations turn to past sexual exploits, they quickly realize Andy is still a virgin, and resolve to help him lose his virginity.

Andy is at first reluctant to go along with them, but after a heartfelt talk with David, he agrees to give it a try. The gang’s efforts prove to be unsuccessful. They take Andy to a bar, where Jay advises him to hit on drunk women, but this backfires when the girl Andy leaves with drives the two of them home drunk, wrecks the car, and vomits on him. Jay recommends that Andy get his chest waxed, but Andy finds it so painful that he leaves halfway through. (Steve Carell actually had his chest hair removed during the scene, and stated in an interview on Australia’s Rove Live that the scene was unnecessarily painful because the waxers forgot to oil his nipples.[3]) David gives Andy his “big box of porn” to help him “loosen up” sexually, but to no avail. They later go to a speed dating lunch, with no success, and at which David encounters ex-girlfriend Amy, sending him into a downward spiral of depression. Later, Cal advises Andy to be questioning when talking to women, (which makes Andy seem mysterious) and results in Beth (Elizabeth Banks), a bookstore clerk, taking a liking to Andy. Andy starts to open up, and as true friendships begin to form with his co-workers, Andy impresses his boss, Paula (Jane Lynch), with his salesmanship and she promotes him to floor manager.

They end up getting married with everyone in attendance, with a sidelong mention of Andy’s action figures having sold for approximately half a million dollars, and finally consummate their relationship on their wedding night. Andy finally loses his virginity with Trish in their hotel room. The film ends with an over-the-top musical scene in which the cast of the film sing and dance to the song “Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In.”

Horton Hears a Who

  • Directors: Jimmy Hayward, Steve Martino
  • Producers: Bob Gordon, Chris Wedge
  • Writers: Dr Seuss, Ken Daurio, Cinco Paul
  • Genres: Animation, Adventure, Comedy, Family
  • Actors: Jim Carrey, Steve Carell, Carol Burnett, Dan Fogler, Will Arnett, Amy Poehler, Jaime Pressly, Seth Rogen, Jesse McCartney, Isla Fisher, Jonah Hill, Selena Gomez

In the jungle of Nool on the fifteenth of May, a caring, imaginative elephant named Horton (Jim Carrey), the jungle’s nature teacher, takes a dip in the pool. A dust speck floats past him in the air, and he hears a tiny yelp coming from it. Believing that an entire family of microscopic creatures are living on that speck, he places it on top of a clover that he holds in his trunk.

In fact, he finds out the speck harbors the city of Whoville and all its inhabitants, led by Mayor Ned McDodd (Steve Carell). He has a loving wife, Sally (Amy Poehler), 96 daughters (all voiced by Selena Gomez and Samantha Droke), and one son named Jojo (Jesse McCartney), who, by Who custom, is next in line for the mayoral position. Jojo does not want to become mayor, which leads him to become sullen and refuse to talk, despite Ned’s giving him extra attention.

The Mayor finds out from Dr. Larue that Whoville will be destroyed if Horton doesn’t find a “safer more stable home.” So Horton resolves to place the speck atop Mt. Nool, the safest place in the jungle. This outlook earns Horton nothing but ridicule from the inhabitants of Nool, especially from the strict official of the jungle, the Sour Kangaroo (Carol Burnett), who tries to get Horton to give up the speck, so as not to put supposedly ridiculous ideas into the heads of the children. Ever faithful to his motto, “A person’s a person, no matter how small,” Horton refuses. Also taking force toward Horton are the Wickersham brothers (consisting of Yummo, voiced by Dan Fogler, along with Frank Welker and Dan Castellaneta), a group of bullying monkeys who love making misery.

Hearing the Whos’ cries, Rudy (Josh Flitter), the Kangaroo’s son (who has been in his mother’s pouch the whole movie despite being at the age where kangaroos usually begin living by themselves), grabs the clover and returns it to Horton, refusing his mother’s orders to return to her pouch. The animals finally realize the atrocity they almost committed. The Kangaroo is sad and sorry for her bad behavior, but Horton forgives her, and offers his friendship, which the Kangaroo accepts. At the end of the film, everyone helps Horton carry the speck up to the top of Mt. Nool. After a big number of the cast singing REO Speedwagon’s “Can’t Fight This Feeling”, the camera zooms out, revealing that along with numerous other worlds in our universe, the jungle of Nool is just one speck among numerous others like our planet.

Over the Hedge

  • Directors: Tim Johnson, Karey Kirkpatrick
  • Producers: Bonnie Arnold
  • Writers: Len Blum, and, Karey Kirkpatrick
  • Genres: Animation, Adventure, Comedy, Crime, Family
  • Actors: Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling, Steve Carell, Avril Lavigne, William Shatner

RJ the raccoon, while foraging for food, encounters the hibernating bear, Vincent and his large cache of food. RJ tries to steal it, but instead causes the food to be crushed in traffic on a nearby road. Vincent threatens to kill RJ, but RJ quickly promises to replace Vincent’s foodstocks within the week, when Vincent is fully awake from his hibernation. RJ discovers a nearby human suburban community, an optimal source for his task, and encounters a group of woodland creatures that have just woken up from their own hibernation in undeveloped forest that is surrounded by the community. The group is led by Verne the turtle, and includes the hyperactive squirrel Hammy, Stella the skunk, father and daughter opossums Ozzie and Heather, and a family of porcupines, Lou and Penny and their children Spike, Bucky, and Quillo. The animals quickly find that a large hedge was put in place while they were sleeping to separate them from the rest of the human development, and are afraid to venture on the other side.

RJ uses the opportunity to introduce himself to the group and explain that they could have better food by scavenging off the humans. Though Verne is wary of RJ’s plans and believes he may be using them, the group of animals quickly find that RJ is right, and begin raiding the human development repeatedly for food. The disappearance of food does not go unnoticed, and the development homeowner association president, Gladys Sharp, calls in the help of a pest control specialist, Dwayne LaFontant, aka “The Verminator”, who installs an overpowered extermination system in her backyard while trying to track down all the animals in the world. Despite close calls with Dwayne, the group of animals continues to gather food from the humans, RJ secretly making sure the food collected will replace Vincent’s stock exactly. RJ is brought in as part of the pack’s extended family, making him feel guilty about hiding his true intent from them. When RJ tries to approach Verne about it, RJ cannot help but lie about the situation.

A final raid planned by RJ before Vincent’s deadline involves invading Gladys’ home, which requires someone to distract her persian cat, Tiger; Stella is quickly groomed to look like a cat to draw Tiger’s attention away. Though they are able to collect most of the food in the kitchen, RJ inadvertently reveals the truth to Verne as he tries to get a can of Spuddies, which are Vincent’s favorites. During their argument, the animals are soon discovered by Gladys and Dwayne, and though RJ gets away, the other animals are all captured. RJ takes the food to Vincent, but upon seeing the other animals captured, uses the food to stop Dwayne’s van and knock the human unconscious, allowing RJ to free the animals. After apologizing for using the group to his own ends, RJ helps the others drive the van back to the forest, chased by Vincent who floated on balloons, a jester and a knight on a horse. The animals try to take shelter in the hedge, with Vincent trying to claw them out from one side, and Dwayne trying to shock them with a Cattle prod and Gladys trying to use a weedwhacker on them from the other side. RJ and Verne come up with a plan to give Hammy an energy drink, which makes him move at light speed and slow time. This allows him to safely activate the extermination traps while RJ uses himself as bait to lure Vincent into Gladys’ backyard (and surprisingly lives because of Verne’s shell). Vincent, Gladys, and Dwayne are momentarily confused just before they are seriously injured by extermination system. Animal control is called to take Vincent to a nature preserve, while both Gladys is arrested for the use of inhumane traps, Dwayne having managed to slip away. Stella finds that Tiger still has a crush on her despite knowing she is a skunk, as he has long since lost his sense of smell, and both RJ and Tiger are accepted into the group. When Verne realizes that they still need food for the winter, Hammy reveals that he stuffed their log home with nuts.

Bruce Almighty

  • Directors: Tom Shadyac
  • Producers: Tom Shadyac, Jim Carrey, James D Brubaker, Michael Bostick, Steve Koren, Mark O Keefe
  • Writers: Steve Koren, Mark O Keefe, Steve Oedekerk
  • Genres: Comedy, Drama, Fantasy
  • Actors: Jim Carrey, Morgan Freeman, Jennifer Aniston, Lisa Ann Walter, Catherine Bell, Steve Carell, Philip Baker Hall, Nora Dunn, Eddie Jemison, Sally Kirkland

Bruce Nolan (Jim Carrey) is a television news reporter for Channel 7 Eyewitness News on WKBW-TV in Buffalo, New York who is unsuccessful at getting a job as an anchorman. After a series of other incidents of ill fortune, he complains to God that He is treating him (Bruce) unfairly and is doing a poor job as supreme deity. God then contacts Bruce in human form (Morgan Freeman) and grants him all of His power so as to prove which one is the better handler thereof. Bruce uses his new-found powers for personal gain: he sabotages a colleague named Evan Baxter (Steve Carell) who had cheated him; takes revenge on a street gang who beat him earlier in the film; transforms his car from a Datsun 240Z to a Saleen S7; allows his favorite hockey team, the Buffalo Sabres, to win the Stanley Cup; places command on a dog to use the toilet for urination; and enhances the breasts and sex drive of his girlfriend, Grace Connelly (Jennifer Aniston).

Bruce endangers his relationship with Grace through his self-centered behavior. God then reminds Bruce that “He” has the task of resolving other people’s problems. God, at this, quotes a line from one of Carrey’s other movies (“Alrighty then”, from Ace Ventura), and tells Bruce that if he wants, Bruce can fix all the world’s problems in a few minutes, knowing that this is untrue. Bruce later receives millions of prayers, all of which, according to God, originate only from a few streets in his own town. Bruce is thus able to realize how much work God must do to keep the cosmos “in line”.

Depressed, Bruce walks onto a highway. Ultimately Bruce realizes that God’s powers are best left for God to handle and asks God to take control of his life. Right after that he is killed by collision with a truck. He is then shown in Heaven, where God asks him “what he really wants”. In answer, Bruce asks that Grace find a man who may make her truly happy and see her through God’s eyes. At this, Bruce is revived by paramedics. Later, Bruce has returned to his earlier field of reporting and is content with it; donates blood for a transfusion; and becomes engaged to marry Grace. The ending scene features a slow close-up of the homeless man, whose image morphs slightly and he is revealed to be God. This echoes a line of Joan Osborne’s song, One of Us, which Bruce is shown singing after his acquisition of the divine power.

Little Miss Sunshine

  • Directors: Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris
  • Producers: Marc Turtletaub, Peter Saraf, Albert Berger, Ron Yerxa, David T Friendly
  • Writers: Michael Arndt
  • Genres: Comedy, Drama
  • Actors: Greg Kinnear, Toni Collette, Steve Carell, Paul Dano, Abigail Breslin, Alan Arkin

Sheryl Hoover (Toni Collette) is an overworked mother of two children, who lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Her brother, Frank (Steve Carell), is a homosexual scholar of French author Marcel Proust, temporarily living at home with the family after having attempted suicide. Sheryl’s husband Richard (Greg Kinnear) has a Type A personality, and is striving to build a career as a motivational speaker and life coach. Dwayne (Paul Dano), Sheryl’s son from a previous marriage, is a Nietzsche-reading troubled teenager who has taken a vow of silence until he can accomplish his dream of becoming a test pilot. Richard’s foulmouthed father Edwin (Alan Arkin), recently evicted from a retirement home for snorting heroin, lives with the family; he is close to his seven-year-old granddaughter Olive (Abigail Breslin).

Olive learns she has qualified for the “Little Miss Sunshine” beauty pageant that is being held in Redondo Beach, California in two days. Her parents and Edwin, who has been coaching her, want to support her, and Frank and Dwayne cannot be left alone, so the whole family goes. Because they have little money, they go on an 800-mile (1,287-km) road trip in their yellow Volkswagen T2 Microbus.

The family is next seen outside the hotel’s security office where a police officer gives them their freedom in return for a promise never to enter a beauty pageant in the state of California again. Piling into the van with the horn still honking, they happily smash through the barrier of the hotel’s toll booth and head back to their home in Albuquerque.