Aging funnyman Eddie Murphy plays a motormouthed literary agent who gets a crash course in holding his tongue after a mystical Bodhi tree sprouts in his backyard. Every word he speaks (or writes) costs him a leaf; if all the leaves fall, he croaks. The high concept breeds lowbrow gags—our hero gets wasted on herbicides (don’t ask) and conducts conference calls using talking toys—but before this star vehicle devolves into a soggy New Age sermon, Murphy’s manic pantomiming offers a few faint flickers of the mad comic genius from 1987’s Raw. His best shot at reviving those glory days would be to drop hack director Brian Robbins (Norbit) like a superfluous sentence.
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