Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls
Theatrical release poster
Directed bySteve Oedekerk
Written bySteve Oedekerk
Based onCharacters
by Jack Bernstein
Produced byJames G. Robinson
Starring
CinematographyDonald E. Thorin
Edited byMalcolm Campbell
Music byRobert Folk
Production
company
Distributed byWarner Bros.
Release dates
Running time
94 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$30 million[1]
Box office$212.4 million[2]

Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls (also known as Ace Ventura 2: When Nature Calls) is a 1995 American detective comedy film and the sequel to Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994), and the second installment of the Ace Ventura franchise. Jim Carrey reprises his role as the title character Ace Ventura, a detective who specializes in retrieval of tame and captive animals, and has been summoned to Africa to locate a missing bat. Ian McNeice, Simon Callow, and Sophie Okonedo co-star. Tommy Davidson, who co-starred with Carrey on the show In Living Color, makes a cameo appearance in the film. The film was written and directed by Carrey's close friend Steve Oedekerk, who had also collaborated in the production and as a character consultant for the first film.

Plot

In the Himalayas, after a failed rescue mission results in a raccoon falling to its death, Ace Ventura succumbs to severe depression and joins a Tibetan monastery. Once he has recovered, he is approached by Fulton Greenwall, a British correspondent working for the consulate of Bonai Province in the fictional African country of Nibia. Because Ace is a liability for the monastery, the Grand Abbot gives Ace excuses to justify his departure, and sends him off with Greenwall.

Greenwall is subjected to Ventura's eccentric behavior when he starts mimicking different mating calls, and his reckless driving when they head along to Africa, warning him about the hostility of eastern lowland gorillas, as it is mating season. Greenwall wants Ventura to find the Great White bat Shikaka, a sacred animal of the native Wachati tribe, which disappeared shortly after being offered as dowry of the Wachati Princess, who is set to wed the Wachootoo Prince in a marriage of state. After arriving in Nibia and meeting with consul Vincent Cadby, Ace begins his investigation, but must overcome his fear of bats in order to succeed.

Accompanied by his pet capuchin monkey Spike, Ace begins his search for the missing bat. He eventually befriends the tribe's princess, who tries to seduce Ace. However, Ace admits his oath to clerical celibacy. Ace also befriends the tribal prince, Ouda, who assists Ace. Ace's investigation involves eliminating obvious suspects—animal traders, poachers, and a safari park owner among others—and enduring the growing escalations of threat between the Wachati and the Wachootoo. After being tranquilized by drugged blow-darts, Ace suspects the medicine-man of the Wachootoo of taking the bat, as he is vehemently opposed to the wedding.

He and Ouda sneak into the Wachootoo tribal village with hopes of finding the bat, and are soon captured. The Wachootoo mistake Ace as the "White Devil", and after Ouda poorly translates Ace's words, they are convinced he wants to fight them and have him go through many painful and humiliating challenges to gain their trust. He creatively passes them all, and his final challenge is a "Circle of Death" fight with their toughest warrior—who, although short in stature, easily defeats Ace. Ace's antics entertain the Wachootoo, who grant Ace their trust and release him.

Despite this, the Wachootoo declare that if the bat is not returned in time, they will declare war on the Wachati tribe and kill Ace. As a parting joke, Ace is shot in the buttock by a non-drugged blow-dart by the Chief to make his people laugh again. As he and Ouda walk back to the village, Ace realizes the dart he was shot with earlier is not the same as the one he was just shot with, meaning that the Wachootoo did not take Shikaka. He also determines that the dart which shot him earlier was carved from a rare red fungus-bearing acala. This leads him to find two Australian poachers with the bat, and he distracts them by mimicking a Silverback mating call. They find Ace and shoot the initial darts into him, take him away and attempt to kill him by tying him to a raft which is sent over a waterfall.

Ace survives and continues to investigate how the poachers are involved with the war between the tribes, concluding there is something valuable in it. Stressed by the case, Ace consults the Grand Abbot via astral projection. Advised by the Abbot, Ace deduces that Cadby has taken the bat, having planned to let the tribes destroy each other so that he can then take possession of the numerous bat caves containing guano to sell as fertilizer worth billions. When Ace confronts Cadby, he learns he was hired as Cadby's alibi once an investigation takes place, and is arrested by tribal security chief Hitu. Ace escapes with help from an elephant who joins him and more jungle animals to raid Cadby's house. Cadby tries to shoot Ace, but is stopped by Greenwall when he punches him in the face. Cadby escapes with the bat in a Land Rover, but Ace follows him in a monster truck. Ace destroys Cadby's car, leaving the bat cage lodged in a tree.

Ace, despite his chronic fear of bats, courageously yet dramatically grabs the bat with his bare hands and returns it just as the tribes are about to fight each other on the battlefield. Cadby, watching nearby, is noticed by Ouda, who calls him the "White Devil" and incites both tribes to pursue him, giving Ace more time. After escaping, Cadby encounters an amorous Silverback eastern lowland gorilla, who mistakes him for a mate. The Wachati Princess is married to the Wachootoo Prince, who is revealed to be the tiny warrior who defeated Ace during the "Circle of Death" tribal challenge earlier. Moments later, it is discovered that the young bride is no longer a virgin, on Ace's account. Despite this, peace between the once-separate tribes is achieved when the two tribes join together and chase after Ace.

Cast

Production

Filming

Filming began under Tom DeCerchio, who later directed Celtic Pride (1996).[3] Because of the success of the first film, Morgan Creek Entertainment Group gave lead-actor Jim Carrey the power to decide the director. In April 1995, Carrey had DeCerchio replaced with Steve Oedekerk, who had worked on the film's predecessor as a script consultant and wrote the screenplay for this film, but had no previous experience with directing feature films. Spike Jonze wanted to direct the film, but Carrey turned him down as he also had no experience but he mainly did not know him well enough. Carrey claims this to be one of his biggest regrets.[4] However, Carrey reiterated he does not regret enlisting Oedekerk to direct as they were friends with creative similarities, which included improvising, changing scenes during filming, and had a vast understanding of the main character.[5] Carrey was sometimes absent from the set which caused the production to go behind schedule.[6] In June 1995, scenes were shot in South Carolina.[5] The following month, filming took place outside Hondo, near San Antonio, Texas.[7]

Part of the film was also shot in British Columbia, Canada. The film was shot in Super 35. Carrey was paid $10 million for his role due to Oedekerk's authority as director.[5]

Music

Soundtrack

Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls is a 1995 soundtrack on this film by composer Robert Folk.

  1. "Africa (What Made You So Strong)" - 3:28 (Johnny Clegg and Savuka)
  2. "Spirits in the Material World" – 4:41 (Sting and Pato Banton)
  3. "Secret Agent Man" – 2:16 (Blues Traveler)
  4. "Don't Change" – 3:41 (Goo Goo Dolls)
  5. "Burnin' Rubber" – 3:18 (Mr. Mirainga)
  6. "Boll Weevil" – 3:17 (The Presidents of the United States of America)
  7. "Blur the Technicolor" – 4:09 (White Zombie)
  8. "Watusi Rodeo" – 2:35 (The Reverend Horton Heat)
  9. "Here Comes the Night" – 3:28 (Native)
  10. "Jungle Groove" – 5:13 (Montell Jordan)
  11. "Ife" – 4:23 (Angélique Kidjo)
  12. "My Pet" – 2:47 (Matthew Sweet)
  13. "It's Aliright" – 4:54 (Blessid Union of Souls)
  14. "Ace in Africa" – 4:40 (Robert Folk)

Release

Theatrical

Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls was released on November 10, 1995.[2]

Home media

Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls was released on Blu-ray by Warner Home Video on September 3, 2013,[8] and on April 23, 2019 by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.[9]

Reception

Box office

The film grossed $37,804,076 during its opening weekend, taking the #1 spot.[10] In the U.S. and Canada, the film grossed $108.3 million, and in other territories, it grossed $104 million. The worldwide gross was $212.3 million. Against its $30 million budget, Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls was a major financial success,[2] surpassing its predecessor.

Critical response

On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 21% based on 28 reviews, with an average rating of 4/10. The site's critical consensus reads: "Nature Calls in this Ace Ventura sequel, and it's answered by the law of diminishing returns".[11] On Metacritic, the film received a weighted average score of 45 out of 100, based on 17 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[12] Audiences surveyed by CinemaScore gave the film a grade B+ on scale of A to F.[13]

Accolades

1996 ASCAP Award

1996 American Comedy Award

1996 Kid's Choice Awards

1996 MTV Movie Awards

1996 Razzie Awards

1996 Stinkers Bad Movie Awards[14]

Sequel

Main article: Ace Ventura Jr.: Pet Detective

A standalone made-for-TV sequel, titled Ace Ventura Jr.: Pet Detective, was released in 2009 to poor reception.

In March 2021, there were reports that a direct sequel under the working title Ace Ventura 3 is in development at Amazon Studios.[15][16] Pat Casey and Josh Miller, writers of Sonic the Hedgehog, were attached as writers for the film.[17][18][19] Although there are no official plans for the film, Jim Carrey joked that he would star in the movie if Christopher Nolan were to direct the film.[20][21] Jim Carrey himself would also take to his Instagram in August 2021, posting a picture of Ace and writing on the post, "More than ready for the next chapter."

References

  1. ^ "Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls - Box Office Data, Movie News, Cast Information - The Numbers". Retrieved October 12, 2017.
  2. ^ a b c "Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls (1995)". Box Office Mojo. 1996-03-02. Retrieved 2015-09-16.
  3. ^ Brew, Simon (April 25, 2018). "The Behind the Scenes Troubles of Ace Ventura 2". Den of Geek.
  4. ^ "Jim Carrey Has Always Regretted Turning Down Spike Jonze As Director of Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls". September 11, 2017. Retrieved September 15, 2017.
  5. ^ a b c Wechsler, Pat; Friedman, Roger D. (1995-06-05). "Jim Carrey, Remote Control Director". New York. Retrieved 2016-10-27.
  6. ^ "The Behind the Scenes Troubles of Ace Ventura 2". 25 April 2018.
  7. ^ Schruers, Fred (1995-07-13). "Jim Carrey: Bare Facts and Shocking Revelations". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 2016-10-18. Retrieved 2016-10-27.
  8. ^ Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls Blu-ray, retrieved 2022-05-20
  9. ^ Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls Blu-ray, retrieved 2022-05-20
  10. ^ "Weekend Box Office : 'Ace' Joins List of Strong Openers". Los Angeles Times. 14 November 1995.
  11. ^ "Ace Ventura - When Nature Calls (1995)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2022-09-06.
  12. ^ "Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 2015-09-16.
  13. ^ "Cinemascore". Archived from the original on 2018-12-20.
  14. ^ "Past Winners Database". 2007-01-03. Archived from the original on January 3, 2007. Retrieved 2015-09-16.
  15. ^ Hannah Lovejoy (March 21, 2021). "Ace Ventura 3 in talks with Amazon with Sonic the Hedgehog writers". Digital Spy. Retrieved March 22, 2021.
  16. ^ Michael Kennedy (March 21, 2021). "Ace Ventura 3 Updates: Release Date Story Cast (Everything We Know So Far)". Screen Rant. Retrieved March 22, 2021.
  17. ^ Joseph Knoop (March 19, 2021). "Ace Ventura 3 in development from Sonic the Hedgehog writers". IGN. Retrieved March 22, 2021.
  18. ^ Kofi Outlaw (March 19, 2021). "Ace Ventura 3 In Development at Amazon with Sonic the Hedgehog writers". Comic Book Movie. Retrieved March 22, 2021.
  19. ^ Daniel Gillespie (March 19, 2021). "Ace Ventura 3 in the works from the Sonic The Hedgehog writers". Screen Rant. Retrieved March 25, 2021.
  20. ^ Jonathan Fuge (April 7, 2022). "Jim Carrey Would Return for Ace Ventura 3 Under One Condition". MovieWeb. Retrieved May 9, 2022.
  21. ^ Will Lavin (April 9, 2022). "Jim Carrey would consider doing 'Ace Ventura 3' if Christopher Nolan Directed it". NME. Retrieved May 9, 2022.