American-born but Indian raised, Pitka (Myers) wants to be the most successful guru on the planet, which means he needs to become more popular than Deepak Chopra. And how exactly does a guru judge popularity? Why, of course, with being invited to appear on Oprah’s show. If only Pitka could be embraced by the reigning queen of daytime television, then he would no longer feel like a second class guru.
But Guru Pitka will not earn the admiration of Oprah or any woman until he learns to love himself first, or so says his teacher, Guru Tugginmypuddha (Ben Kingsley). Oh yeah, his name is pronounced exactly how you’ve sounded it out. Hysterical, right? And get this, Pitka was raised in the tiny village of Harenmahkeester. Wowza, that’s a real belly-laugher right there, isn’t it? But wait, the name bit only gets better when we meet Jacque Le Coq Grande, a hockey goalie with a grand ‘le coq’. And then there’s Coach Cherkov… The Love Guru’s just jam packed full of these wiener zingers.
Mike Myers hams it up as Guru Pitka, his first new character since Austin Powers. But where Austin Powers grew on audiences over the course of the film franchise, Guru Pitka’s not likely to grow on anyone over the age of 12 over the course of one movie. Pitka's like that obnoxiously weird uncle who does inappropriate things in front of company. By the end of 88 minutes, I was ready to say goodbye and good riddance to Pitka forever. By the way, the short running time is the one positive thing that can be said about The Love Guru.
Verne Troyer, aka Mini-Me from the Austin Powers movies, has a key supporting role in The Love Guru as the coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs, and of course his diminutive stature is the butt of dozens of easy jokes. Meagan Good just puts in time as the wife who trades in an offensive player for a goalie. Good’s given nothing to do at all except look pretty and pissed off.
Strangely enough, it’s pop star Justin Timberlake who comes across as the funniest guy in the film. With a super exaggerated Canadian accent, Timberlake takes it so far over the top he needs binoculars to see the rest of the cast.
The Bottom Line
I wonder why the LA Kings and the Toronto Maple Leafs agreed to have their team names used in this film. Obviously the reps from both teams didn’t take a close look at the script before signing on. If they had, chances are they wouldn’t have said yes to being a part of a movie in which a key scene (one that's supposed to be one of the funniest bits in the movie) involves two massive elephants humping in the middle of a hockey rink during a playoff game. Oh yeah, that’s entertainment.
Sales at the concession stands may suffer as The Love Guru is one movie you shouldn’t eat or drink anything while watching. It’s a hard film to stomach even while not munching away on popcorn and treats. Between the urine and the booger jokes, The Love Guru is a real test of one's ability to control feelings of nausea. Save your money, and the contents of your stomach, and skip The Love Guru.
The Love Guru was directed by Marco Schnabel and is rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content throughout, language, some comic violence and drug references.
Theatrical Release Date: June 20, 2008