Netflix just added a seriously underrated comedy starring Jim Carrey and Téa Leoni — Fun with Dick and Jane. The movie joined the Netflix catalog on Saturday, May 1 with a host of other new and returning content. Here's what you need to know about the newly available film.
Fun with Dick and Jane is a 2005 remake of a 1977 film by the same name. This version was written by Judd Apatow and Nicholas Stoller and was directed by Dean Parisot. It tells the story of the Harpers, a seemingly average middle-class couple whose lives are turned upside down when Dick (Carrey)'s employer suddenly goes bankrupt. With few options before them, Dick and Jane (Leoni) resort to robbery. The movie is a scathing indictment of corporate greed and, in some ways, of the American dream itself.
It's also hilarious, and its jokes hold up well all these years later by the standards of a blockbuster comedy.
Dick's nefarious boss, Jack McCallister is played by Alec Baldwin. Other notable names on the cast include Richard Jenkins, Angie Harmon and John Michael Higgins. There is a brief appearance by Laurie Metcalf, and even a cameo by presidential hopeful Ralph Nader, who plays himself.
Fun with Dick and Jane is an adaptation several times over now. It began as a novel written by Gerald Gaiser, which was adapted into the 1977 film starring George Segal and Jane Fonda. According to a report by United Press International, Jane was originally meant to be played by Cameron Diaz in the remake, though she left the project after a slew of changes to the creative lineup.
Critics were not kind to Fun with Dick and Jane around the time of its release, though many have been more kind to it in hindsight. It is often compared to other comedy remakes of the era, including Cheaper by the Dozen starring Steve Martin. However, commercially it was more concerned with blockbuster competition like The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and King Kong. The movie even paused development at one point while Carrey filmed Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events.
This is just one of the big movies to join the Netflix catalog this week. There are a number of nostalgia hits, action movies and major franchises available to watch now, and more coming throughout the month. Netflix tends to put the greatest emphasis on its original content these days, but its licensed library is still prodigious.
Fun with Dick and Jane is streaming now on Netflix. There is no word on when it might disappear from the queue.