Since his meteoric rise to superstardom in 1994 with his back-to-back-to-back hits “Ace Ventura: Pet Detective”, “The Mask”, and “Dumb and Dumber”, Jim Carrey has cemented himself as arguably the greatest physical comedian of our time. Whether bringing to life the zaniness of The Riddler in “Batman Forever”, terrorizing the denizens of Whoville in “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas”, or temporarily assuming the responsibilities of God himself in “Bruce Almighty”, Mr. Carrey’s skill in the art of slapstick, and his incredible talent for contorting his face and body as if they were made of rubber, has made him into a legend among comedians.
However, Jim Carrey’s physical talents hardly end there. Over the course of his career, he has displayed a remarkable talent for the art of screen combat. Mr. Carrey, a real-life Brazilian Jiu-jitsu practitioner, has brought his own specific flavor of comedic action to the art of the fight scene, and with such uncontainable, irrepressible energy that we can only wonder why he has yet to do a movie with Jackie Chan (seriously, someone in Hollywood or Hong Kong, make that happen!). All this talk about Mr. Carrey’s extraordinary talent for comedic action can only mean one thing – a countdown of a decidedly different, absolutely hysterical blend of action and comedy. So readers, here come our Top 10 Jim Carrey Movie Fights! (in descending order)
- Man on the Moon (1999) – Andy Kaufman vs Lynne Margulies
- Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994) – Ace Ventura vs Lieutenant Einhorn
- Me, Myself & Irene (2000) – Charlie vs Hank
- Liar Liar (1997) – Fletcher vs blue pen
- Liar Liar – Fletcher vs Fletcher
- Dumb and Dumber (1994) – Restaurant Fight
- Dumb and Dumber To (2014) – Lloyd vs Ninja assassins
- Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls (1995) – The Wachootoo Circle of Death
- The Cable Guy (1996) – Jousting at Medieval Times
Jim Carrey arguably never poured more of his blood, sweat, and tears into any role than his portrayal of controversial comedian Andy Kaufman in the 1999 biopic “Man on the Moon” – and considering the arduous make-up job he went through for “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas”, that’s not a statement one can make lightly (check out the Netflix documentary “Jim and Andy: The Great Beyond” if you need any further confirmation)! In any case, this entry also holds the distinction of being the only Jim Carrey movie fight with a historical basis, as Andy Kaufman was indeed the self-proclaimed “Inter-Gender Wrestling Champion of the World”, and naturally, Mr. Carrey injects plenty of his own unique brand of physical comedy to do justice to Mr. Kaufman’s professional wrestling career.
Mr. Kaufman’s reputation for hoaxes and pranks left many convinced that his death in 1984 was just his latest big stunt. And if the ending of “Man on the Moon” is any indication, we can’t completely rule out a future return to pro-wrestling for Mr. Kaufman – indeed, what more fitting opponent could there be for his unexpected comeback fight than Jim Carrey himself?
Jim Carrey scored his first big hit with 1994’s “Ace Ventura: Pet Detective”, the first of three comedic home runs he’d hit out of the park that year with “The Mask” and “Dumb and Dumber” following. More than any other character Mr. Carrey has ever portrayed, Ace Ventura comes right out of an episode of “Looney Tunes”, a whirlwind of hellacious insanity and laugh-a-minute physical slapstick. For the film’s climax, the world’s greatest pet detective has uncovered that Lieutenant Lois Einhorn, played by Sean Young, of the Miami Police Department is behind the kidnapping of Miami Dolphins’ quarterback Dan Marino and the team’s dolphin mascot, Snowflake. Normally, going so rough on a lady, even in a live-action cartoon like “Ace Ventura”, wouldn’t be the most sure-fire path a film could take to box office success. However, as Mr. Ventura discovers a few scenes earlier, Lieutenant Einhorn is not all that she seems – leaving him free to lay a few knuckle sandwiches on one of Miami’s finest as only he can!
It’s often been said that the greatest opponent anyone can ever face is themselves, but Jim Carrey takes that to a whole new level in 2000’s “Me, Myself, and Irene”. Carrey portrays the milquetoast Rhode Island state trooper Charlie Baileygates, who after years of suffering from abuse and mistreatment from everyone around him develops a split personality named “Hank”, who is more than happy to unleash Charlie’s years’ of suppressed rage against his tormentors. This proves to be a major complication on Charlie’s latest assignment of protecting the lovely Irene, played by Renee Zellweger, from hitmen out to get her, given that both Charlie and Hank are infatuated with Irene. Eventually, Charlie and Hank decide to go mano a mano outside of a train station, and the fact that they happen to inhabit the same body makes it a (very) perplexing sight for every onlooker. And, of course, Jim Carrey knows how to milk comedy gold out of a man literally at war with himself better than anyone!
Following their previous collaboration in “Ace Ventura: Pet Detective”, Jim Carrey teamed-up again with director Tom Shadyac for arguably his most out-and-out hilarious comedy, 1997’s “Liar Liar”. Carrey plays Fletcher Reede, a successful lawyer whose constant broken promises leads his young son Max to wish on his fifth birthday that his father can’t tell a lie for just one day. Unfortunately for Fletcher, not only does Max’s wish come true, but it forces him to abide by the same standard of honesty as being in a courtroom of telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth – at all times. Determined to break the curse, Fletcher finds himself going head-to-head with a blue pen in his desperate attempt to say that it is red, and by the end, it’s pretty clear who the victor was. Fortunately, for lovers of Mr. Carrey’s unique brand of action mixed with slapstick physical comedy, this isn’t Fletcher’s only smackdown with his own lack of honesty in the film, as we shall see in the very next entry on this list…
When it comes to his career overall, 1997’s “Liar Liar” is very probably Jim Carrey’s crowning comedy achievement. Can you imagine being afflicted with a one-day curse that would force you to fess up to unpaid parking tickets, spill the beans to your secretary that you stiffed her on a raise, and offer your brutally unrestrained opinion of your boss in front of the entire office? Fletcher Reede experiences all of that and more in his twenty-four hours of unbridled honesty – compounded by the fact that his client is the plaintiff in a divorce case that he cannot possibly win by sticking to the truth. However, Fletcher thinks he’s found the perfect way to delay the case until after the curse wears off – by beating himself to a bloody pulp, and if ever there was a master of laying a beatdown on himself in the most LOL way possible, it’s Jim Carrey!
By the time “Dumb and Dumber” hit theatres in December 1994, Jim Carrey had fully cemented himself as the year’s number one breakout star. For his third box office hit in a row, Mr. Carrey assumed the role of Lloyd Christmas, a limousine driver with the I.Q. of a bottle cap who hopelessly pursues the affections of the lovely socialite Mary Swanson, (played by Lauren Holly of “Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story” fame) from Rhode Island all the way to Colorado. During his road trip with his best friend Harry (played by Jeff Daniels), Lloyd does what any hopeless romantic does to win Mary’s heart and lets his imagination run a little wild. In his fantasy, not only has he won Mary’s heart, he also solidifies their romance after defending her honor against a few romantic competitors encroaching on their date night. It certainly can’t be a coincidence that, with “Mortal Kombat” having very recently captured the popular consciousness, that Lloyd finishes off his last opponent by literally pulling his heart out, but at least Lloyd’s kind enough to hand it back to the enemy in a doggy bag!
If it’s a “Dumb and Dumber” movie, it’s gotta let Lloyd cut loose in a Fantasy-Fu battle for the affections of a lady just beyond his reach, right? Released twenty years after their 1994 hit, “Dumb and Dumber To” reunites Mr. Carrey with Jeff Daniels in the role of Lloyd’s equally dimwitted best friend, Harry, and writer-director duo, Peter and Bobby Farrelly to deliver comedy gold once more. This time, Lloyd and Harry find themselves on another road trip to find Harry’s long-lost daughter, Fanny, played by Rachel Melvin, who ends up the object of Lloyd’s amorous affections. And as we all know, Lloyd never romances a lady without fantasizing about defending her honor in a martial arts battle, does he? Jim Carrey’s chemistry with Jeff Daniels as Harry and Lloyd made their reunion in “Dumb and Dumber To” a true joy for fans of the original, especially when one considers Mr. Carrey’s well-known reluctance for appearing in sequels. I’m sure we can all agree that, with the power of pure slapstick by his side, no amount of sword-wielding ninja assassins are a match for Jim Carrey!
The world’s greatest pet detective gets a little lesson in the folly of hubris when he finds himself in the Wachootoo Circle of Death in “Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls”. After passing every other Wachootoo test with flying colors, our hero feels assured of his own victory after seeing the unassuming stature of his opponent. However, from the first punch of their duel, Ace soon realizes just how badly he’s underestimated his foe, who, judging from how easily he trounces Ace from the beginning, has probably spent time training in Wakanda alongside the Black Panther! However, it’s said that the shortest distance between two people is laughter, and that ultimately proves to be what saves Ace from certain defeat, as you can see. Be sure to check out KFK’s list of the Top 10 Hilarious Movie Fights, where Ace’s battle in the Wachootoo Circle of Death also holds a place of honor!
After several years’ of cartoonish physical comedy and slapstick humor, the world was a little taken aback by Jim Carrey’s step into black comedy territory with 1996’s “The Cable Guy”, directed by his fellow comedian Ben Stiller. However, Mr. Carrey has never been reluctant to try new things, and “The Cable Guy” is possibly the most underrated chapter in his filmography. Carrey plays Chip Douglas, a socially awkward cable installer who is certain he’s found his new best friend in the form of Steven Kovacs, played by Matthew Broderick. However, Steven very quickly discovers that Chip’s idea of friendship is extremely unorthodox at best, especially when he finds himself jousting his new friend in a Medieval Times restaurant. “Star Trek” fans will surely catch the spoofing of Spock and Kirk’s face-off in the episode “Amok Time” even without Chip pointing it out to them, and rarely has product placement ever been so cleverly woven into a movie as it is here. For fight sequences in Jim Carrey movies, the Medieval joust of “The Cable Guy” is an all-time classic!
….and in at #1 is…
In Living Color (1990) – Karate Instructor
Ironically, Jim Carrey’s finest hour of kung foo-lishness emerged not on the big screen, but during his time on The Wayans Brothers’ sketch comedy series “In Living Color”. Although his big breakout to megastardom wouldn’t come until his three consecutive hits with “Ace Ventura: Pet Detective”, “The Mask”, and “Dumb and Dumber” in 1994, Mr. Carrey had gained considerable acclaim as a major rising comedian on “In Living Color”, and nowhere is that better encapsulated than in Sensei Bob Jackson’s McDojo of sheer craziness. Not only does Mr. Carrey cleverly lampoon the fraudulent claims of pseudo-martial arts masters that we’ve all encountered, but you can see his total mastery of physical comedy and slapstick humor on display long before his future big screen stardom. This also wasn’t the only time Jim Carrey would perform in a martial arts spoof on “In Living Color”; he’d previously done a loving send up to the TV series “Kung Fu” earlier on the show (which you can see below) and between the two skits, you’ll surely agree that this was a man well on his way to becoming a comedic legend!
So there we have it folks, 10 memorable Jim Carrey movie fights. What are some of your fave Carrey FU-n fight moments? Can you imagine him teaming up with another “JC” legend, (ie. Jackie Chan) or other martial arts star, what do you reckon would happen? Let us know in the comments below, join in the conversation on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram. (Get more kicks for your bucks with these other Top 10’s!)