“The Tooth Fairy” casts Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as a cocky, arrogant ice hockey player named Derek “Tooth Fairy” Thompson. Mostly known for his aggressively competitive attitude on the ice, he is becoming less and less of a respected athlete by the day, as evidenced by a rookie player (Ryan Sheckler) that insinuates his fifteen minutes of fame are up. Meanwhile, Derek has struggles becoming a family man as well. After nearly spilling the beans about the nonexistence of a real tooth fairy, his relationship with his girlfriend Carly (Ashley Judd) is set at a precarious angle.
However, his transgressions do not go unpunished. Much to his surprise, a real tooth fairy DOES exist. In fact, there are SEVERAL tooth fairies performing their duties nightly. The immense tooth fairy community is gathered together in a dreamy, Heaven-like setting. The head fairy Lily (Julie Andrews) regulates and assigns all operations to the other workers. Derek’s grueling punishment is that he has to pose as a tooth fairy himself for a full two weeks. Problem is that his responsibilities often pop up spontaneously; he never knows at what moment he will have to forcibly spring into action.
Riveting tale, ain’t it? Actually in all honesty, the film is not as much of an epic fail as one might assume. The content is harmless for the target audience (children), the writing is not bad and The Rock brings likeable charm and charisma to a fundamentally reprehensible adult character. My problem is that the film’s main joke is The Rock, a powerful and intimidating presence, being put into some blue Peter Pan tights, sprouting tiny wings from his back and is expected to act like a tooth fairy. The laughter with this one joke can only be sustained for so long before it is no longer funny.
Although not necessarily a legitimate complaint, I also felt that certain celebrity cameo appearances felt pointless to say the least. I mean, was Billy Crystal the ONLY actor available to play the role of a fairy gear specialist? Did we really need to throw in Seth MacFarlane for less than a minute to portray a fairy conman that sells faulty equipment? Even larger roles like Stephen Merchant’s character didn’t seem to contribute anything substantial (okay, in Merchant’s case, his height, his gangly physique and his goofy appearance) to the film.
All in all, “The Tooth Fairy” is not utter garbage like I expected it to be. I got a few minor chuckles here and there. Sure, I probably won’t remember the movie two weeks from now, but it was not an entirely wasted experience. However, the film does not put enough effort into adding any timeless or ageless appeal for outside its target demographic; there is nothing to draw in parents as well as younger children. This little problem is what separates this from most family movies being released these days, some of which transcend the classification of “good family movie” and rise to the status of “good movie.” “The Tooth Fairy” is innocuous entertainment that sadly doesn’t leave a lasting impression.