"Date Night" is a middle-aged romantic comedy that splits between overplayed situational slap-stick gags and saucy comic delivery from its compatible leads. As Phil and Claire Foster, a New Jersey wedded couple of 10-years, Tina Fey and Steve Carell are perfectly plausible and easy on the funny bone. The problem is screenwriter Josh Klausner's hackneyed story that puts the couple on the run from a couple of bad-apple cops in a case of mistaken identity. Pumped-up cameos from the likes of Mark Wahlberg, Ray Liotta, James Franco, and Mila Kunis do little to distract from a sophomoric script that never should have been green-lit. Even the film's centerpiece car chase sequence is a thing of inert comic value. Tina Fey and Steve Carell deserve better. Their effortless comic timing together is the only thing to recommend "Date Night," but that's enough to make it worth your time.
Rated PG-13. 87 mins. (B-) (Three Stars - out of five/no halves)
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