“The tooth hurts.” “You can’t handle the tooth.” “The tooth, and nothing but the tooth.”
There’s a lot of that kind of stuff in Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s highly formulaic new kids’ movie “Tooth Fairy.”
In it, the ex-wrestler and one-time “Scorpion King” spouts dainty “Bugaloo” wings and dons a girly pink tutu.
It’s penance, you see, for cynically destroying the fantasies of youngsters still gullible, or hopeful enough to believe in magical beings who dispense cold, hard cash in exchange for discarded pieces of their youth – and let’s be honest – the earliest indications of their own mortality.
Johnson plays minor league hockey bad boy Derek Johnson, a charismatic goon who earns his bush league paycheck routinely knocking out the teeth of his opponents.
His nickname is actually “The Tooth Fairy”.
I’m sure NHL tough guys like Tie Domi and Dave Shultz would have loved similar monickers.
Be that as it may, the sight of the brawny Johnson in an effete fairy costume would probably have been more incongruous and ridiculous – and therefore a whole lot funnier – if wrestlers like The Rock didn’t have such a long history of toying with fey props like feather boas and bleached blonde locks.
Director Michael Lembeck brings in Julie Andrews and Billy Crystal in hopes of shoring up the charmfactor, but unless the kids are fans of “The Sound of Music”, they aren’t going to know who Miss Andrews is or why her presence in the movie is supposed to be so special.
Crystal does his best to imbibe the lackluster script with some snap, but while admirable, he never approaches the brilliance he once displayed telling folks to “have fun storming the castle.”
The angels may be able to fly because they take themselves so lightly. The“Tooth Fairy”, on the other hand, is guilty of trying too hard to flap its comic wings.
Directed by Michael Lembeck. Starring Dwayne Johnson. with Ashley Judd, Billy Crystal and Julie Andrews. Rated PG, runtime 101 minutes.