Bruce Almighty

Bruce Almighty Information

Bruce Almighty is a 2003 American fantasy comedy film directed by Tom Shadyac and written by Steve Koren, Mark O'Keefe and Steve Oedekerk. It stars Jim Carrey as Bruce Nolan, a down-on-his-luck TV reporter who complains to God that he isn't doing his job correctly, and is then offered the chance to try being God himself for one week. Morgan Freeman, Jennifer Aniston, Steve Carell, Catherine Bell, Lisa Ann Walter, and Philip Baker Hall also star, while Tony Bennett makes a cameo appearance.

This is Shadyac and Carrey's third collaboration after working together on Shadyac's first film, Ace Ventura, Pet Detective, which also launched Carrey's career, and Liar Liar.

When released in American theaters in May 2003, it took the #1 spot at the box office, grossing $85.89 million - higher than the release of Pearl Harbor, making it the highest-rated Memorial Day weekend opening of any film in motion picture history (until the release of X-Men: The Last Stand in 2006). The movie surprised media analysts when it beat The Matrix Reloaded after its first week of release. By the time it left theaters, it took in a United States domestic total of over $242 million and $484 million worldwide. The film has gone on to become a cult film.


Bruce Nolan (Jim Carrey) is a television field reporter for WKBW-TV in Buffalo, New York but desires to be the news anchorman. He is passed over for the promotion in favour of his co-worker rival, Evan Baxter (Steve Carell) and becomes furious and rages during a live interview at Niagara Falls. His actions lead to his suspension from the station, followed by a series of misfortunes when he is assaulted by a gang of thugs for protecting a blind man they are bullying. Shortly after getting fired from his job, Bruce complains to God (Morgan Freeman) that He isn't doing His job correctly.

Bruce later receives a message in his pager, directing him to an empty warehouse where God appears. God offers Bruce His powers to prove that He is doing his job correctly. God tells Bruce not to tell others he has God's powers nor use the powers to alter free will. Bruce is initially jubilant, using his newfound abilities for personal gain, such as impressing his girlfriend Grace Connelly (Jennifer Aniston), taking revenge on the gang that assaulted him, and getting his job back, causing miraculous things to occur at otherwise mundane events that he covers, such as making a meteor land near a cook-off, earning him the name "Mr. Exclusive". Bruce then gets revenge by causing Evan to embarrass himself on-air, which results in Evan being sent back to his reporting job and Bruce installed as the new anchor.

But Bruce hears voices in his head that (at first) he cannot understand. He later re-encounters God on Mount Everest, who explains that the voices are prayers meant for God that Bruce must deal with. He also confronts Bruce on using the powers for personal gain and not for helping people. Bruce creates a computerized email-like system to receive the prayers and respond. Predictably, he finds that the influx is far too great for him to handle " even though God has stated that Bruce is only receiving prayers from the Buffalo area. To save himself time, Bruce sets the program to automatically answer every prayer as Yes for the duration of his stint as God.

Bruce attends a party celebrating his promotion. When Grace arrives, she finds Bruce and his co-anchor Susan Ortega (Catherine Bell) kissing, after she had forcefully come on to him, and flees, refusing to believe his pleas that it was a misunderstanding. Bruce follows her, trying to use his powers to convince her to stay, but cannot influence her free will. As Bruce looks around, he realizes that the city has fallen into chaos due to his actions: parts of the city believe the Apocalypse is near because of the meteor strike at the cook-off, while a large number of people, all who prayed to win the multi-million dollar lottery, are now rioting because they've all won and each prize has been reduced to $17. Bruce returns to God and asks how people can all act this way after he gave them what they wanted. God explains that nobody ever has a clue about what they want or the consequences that come with it. God then explains that people always want him to perform miracles for them but they don't realize that they can perform the miracles themselves. So God gives Bruce some words of wisdom,"If you want to see a miracle, be the miracle." Bruce returns to his computer and unplugs the prayer system. He then resigns his short-lived anchorman career and informs Evan that he will be given back the job. Bruce then proceeds to live his life without using his powers. Among other things, he helps a stranded motorist push his car, makes his own sign and stands with the homeless man, and finally trains his dog Max to urinate outdoors. Grace's sister stops by to retrieve her things and sees how Bruce has changed. She chooses to inform him that every night Grace prays, and that usually it's for him. Bruce reactivates the prayer computer to search for Grace and finds countless prayers asking for his success and well-being. As he reads them, another prayer from Grace arrives, asking not to be in love with Bruce anymore.

Saddened, Bruce walks alone on a highway in a thunderstorm. He asks God to take back the powers and to remove his fate from his own hands. Bruce is suddenly struck by a truck and, upon regaining consciousness, finds himself in a white void (presumably Heaven). God appears, and asks Bruce what he really wants; Bruce admits that he only wants to make sure Grace finds a man that would make her happy. God agrees, and Bruce finds himself bruised and bandaged in the hospital, shortly after having been near-miraculously resuscitated by the doctors thanks to God. Grace arrives and the two rekindle their relationship (while they hug, Bruce notices the prayer beads suddenly in his hand and mutters to God, "Now You're just showing off."), with Bruce and Grace later becoming engaged. After his recovery, Bruce returns to his field reporting but takes more pleasure in the simple stories and interviews. The film ends with him doing an item at a blood drive with the same bakers he was with in the beginning - this time his charm, enthusiasm and an uplifting speech cause his colleagues, Evan and Grace to break spontaneously into joyful applause. As Grace drags an unwilling Bruce to give blood, the homeless man stands in the background with a sign reading "Armageddon outta here," slowly morphing into the form of God. God then claps his hands and everything cuts to black.


Reception and controversy

The film received mixed reviews, with a score of 48% on Rotten Tomatoes based on 181 reviews and a weighted average score of 46 out of 100 on Metacritic. It received a B rating at Box Office Mojo and a score of 6.6 on Internet Movie Database.


The film was banned in Egypt due to pressure from Islamic religious circuits who objected to the portrayal of God as a visually ordinary man. Bans in both Malaysia and Egypt were eventually lifted after the Censorship Board gave it the "18PL" rating (suitable for adult viewers only for a combination of two or more of the given parental ratings). Also, since God contacts Bruce using an actual phone number rather than a number in the standard fictional 555 telephone exchange, several people and groups sharing this number subsequently received hundreds of phone calls from people wanting to talk to God. The producers noted that the number was not in use in the area code (716, which was never specified on screen) in the film's story but did not check anywhere else. The home video and television versions changed it to the fictional 555.


On June 22, 2007, a sequel to Bruce Almighty entitled Evan Almighty was released, with Steve Carell reprising to his role as Evan Baxter and Morgan Freeman returning to his role as God. Although Shadyac returned to direct the sequel, neither Carrey nor Aniston were involved with the film, though Carrey's character, Bruce, is mentioned in the film's teaser trailer. The sequel was not as well received as the predecessor, with a 23% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a rating of 37/100on Metacritic.

On January 12, 2012, another sequel to Bruce Almighty was announced starring Jim Carrey.


}} The soundtrack was released on June 3, 2003 by Varèse Sarabande. Tracks 9-14 are from the score composed by John Debney, performed by the Hollywood Studio Symphony (conducted by Pete Anthony) with Brad Dechter and Sandy De Crescent.

  1. "One of Us" - Joan Osborne
  2. "God-Shaped-Hole" - Plumb
  3. "You're a God" - Vertical Horizon
  4. "The Power" - Snap!
  5. "A Little Less Conversation" - Elvis vs. JXL
  6. "The Rockafeller Skank" - Fatboy Slim
  7. "God Gave Me Everything" - Mick Jagger featuring Lenny Kravitz
  8. "AB Positive"
  9. "Walking on Water"
  10. "Vertical 69"
  11. "Bruce Meets God"
  12. "Bruce's Prayer"
  13. "Grace's Prayer"
  14. "God's Prayer"
  15. "Seventh at Seven"

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