Remember Raw-era Eddie Murphy? The Eddie Murphy who shit-talked Bill Cosby and wore the tightest leather pants in the universe? Or remember Eddie Murphy in Beverly Hills Cop? Yeah, well, forget about that Eddie Murphy. All we have now is an Eddie Murphy who lazily fulfills contractual studio obligations by making stupid comedies about spacemen who poop money. I'm not kidding. This actually happens in his new movie. And it happens inside an Old Navy.
The vaguely sci-fi plot of Meet Dave (God, are you really going to make me relive this?) follows the inhabitants of the planet Nil, who attempt to steal Earth's salt by throwing a glowing orb into our ocean to suck it dry with its orby power. (Again, not kidding.) Of course, the damn thing misses the ocean and lands in some kid's fishbowl instead. Oops! So a team of tiny little Nil scientists is quickly dispatched to Earth to retrieve the orb thing from the kid and chuck it into the sea, thereby ending life as we know it. Murphy plays a dual role as the captain of the Nils' ship and as the ship itself. I guess I should mention that the Dave of Meet Dave is, um, a spaceship shaped like Eddie Murphy. Yep.
The normally excellent Ed Helms, of The Office and The Daily Show, plays the jerky, mutinous, and not-funny-even-once second-in-command of ye olde S.S. Eddie Murphy, who in a not-so-clever Star Trek reference, is named Number Two. I mention this only because I cried a little bit when Murphy, after regaining control of the ship from the evil Helms, declares, "Sorry Earth! Sometimes Number Two happens!" Oh my Christ.
Eventually, through a series of goofy mishaps (involving a lot of product placement and a hot dog eating contest, natch), the li'l Nils learn an important lesson about love and I don't know, poop I guess. Anyway, it stops them from destroying Earth, which seems like a good thing until you consider that Eddie Murphy still lives here.
Starring: Eddie Murphy, Elizabeth Banks, Ed Helms. Directed by Brian Robbins. Rated PG