Ben Stiller’s quick-to-DVD version of The Heartbreak Kid is a prime example of why Hollywood sometimes needs to think twice about doing a remake. The Heartbreak Kid was originally done by Elaine May back in 1972 in a funny, sympathetic manner, but in 2007, Ben Stiller and the Farrelly Brothers have made an unsympathetic film devoid of real humor. Admittedly, trying to judge any movie against the genius of the previous Farrelly/Stiller vehicle There’s Something About Mary is somewhat unfair, so rarely does lightning in a bottle strike twice.
Ben Stiller plays Eddie Cantrow, a friendly, easygoing guy who owns a sporting goods store. His skirt-chasing father, Doc (Jerry Stiller) and his best friend Mac (Rob Corddry), are constantly pressuring him about getting married. One day while Eddie is walking home from work he spots a man on a bicycle stealing a woman’s purse. He tries to stop the man but the thief gets away. Soon, he and the woman, named Lila (Malin Akerman), are happily dating. Within weeks, with a little push from his father and best friend, Lila and Eddie are wed.
Elaine May’s version of The Heartbreak Kid is a fondly regarded film about a second chance at love. In contrast, it becomes clear from the moment that Eddie and Lila are married that the Farrelly Brothers chose to make a low-brow film about two unsympathetic individuals. As the newlyweds begin their road trip to Mexico, Lila reveals that she can’t do any of the things Eddie had planned on during their trip for one reason or another. To top it off, Lila sings along to every song on the radio, driving her new husband to the edge of sanity. She's subject to seasickness, bad at math, misuses vocabulary, has no money or real job, and even gets her husband's name wrong, all while demanding rougher sex — and in more challenging positions than Edward (not Edmund) finds comfortable.