The Invention of Lying (2009) Review

In a world where no one has ever lied before Mark Bellison one day discovers that it works in his favour and continues to tell lies for his own personal gain, although it quickly gets out of hand.


I absolutely love the concept behind The Invention of Lying and think the first half of the film works so very well, but I then felt lost once it hit into the second part for reasons I will try to explain later.

Mark Bellison has a pretty rubbish life and is not really very happy with how things are going at work, he is single and attempting to date Anna McDoogles does not go well especially given that people don’t lie so she is upfront and tells him that he is overweight and they would not have nice looking children. That filter of always telling the truth is absolutely brutal and would be quite frankly awful.

I think the biggest thing the whole film highlights is that actually telling a small lie or more not the full truth is actually better and protects people. Can you even imagine how horrible and harsh everyone would be if they actually spoke the truth about every single little thing? We think we are depressed and unhappy now, but my god if we told the truth it would easily be 100 times worse. As come on let’s face it even with our best friends we tell them things in the nicest possible way possible.

Within the story of this film it is utterly brutal and I think the fact that it’s seen as normal and the way the other characters then take it makes it rather amusing to watch. The shift in the story is when Mark’s mother is about to die and he tells a lie that she is going to another place which is lovely and you will surrounded by all the people you love who have already passed away. As this is overheard he is then seen as somewhat of a prophet about what he knows.

This was when the film lost me a little creating him as Jesus and taking on that son of God type role with what he is telling people, although he is just making things up to make people happier and feel better. Along with that Anna was still on his radar as well, before this though he had actually been using the lies to actually help others which was quite nice.

Ricky Gervais is decent in the leading role and you can fully believe the type of character he is, something that you always have to applaud is that he is always more than happy about criticising his own appearance. Jennifer Garner was underused in my personal opinion and I felt she could have had much better character development than she was given. The same can be said for Tina Fey as well! Rob Lowe was a character for everyone to just quite frankly hate, and that worked!

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