Film / Identity Thief
is a 2013 comedy film, starring Jason Bateman
and Melissa McCarthy
and directed by Seth Gordon.
McCarthy plays the titular thief who royally screws over Bateman's character. As he attempts to bring her to justice and get his life back, she is pursued by two goons seeking money, as well as a bounty hunter.
This film provides examples of:
- The Alleged Car: Sandy's rental car, until it gets banged up. The car he later buys for $200 is a proper example of this trope.
- Artistic License – Law: In real life, even if a criminal escapes to another state the police can just call that state's police and get them to arrest them. And since Diana's crimes (identity theft and wire fraud) are federal it should be a job for the FBI anyway.
- Sandy would also have a pretty easy wrongful dismissal claim against his employer if they truly let him go because of a police mix-up.
- Asshole Victim: Sandy is more than happy to let Diana steal Harold Cornish's identity.
- Big Bad Ensemble: Marisol, Julian, and Skiptracer
- Bounty Hunter: The Skiptracer.
- Butt Monkey: Sandy
- Chekhov's Skill: Diana's ability to pick handcuffs.
- Deadpan Snarker: Sandy, naturally.
- The Determinator: Skiptracer, whose specialty is tracking down bail jumpers. Fitting, considering he's played by Robert Patrick, AKA The T-1,000.
- Flat Character: Skiptracer. Considering Diana is already being followed by the other two goons, his whole role could've been cut and it wouldn't have made a difference.
- The two goons come across as less interesting than the Skiptracer and only seem to be there as muscle for The Unfought Big Bad.
- I Have Many Names: Diana went through so many different identities that she doesn't know what her birth name is. Sandy finds out that it is Dawn Budgie.
- Jerkass: Sandy's boss, Harold Cornish.
- And the gas station employee who cuts Sandy's credit card in half when he tries to pay for gas.
- Karma Houdini: Subverted for Sandy, who is arrested for stealing his former boss's identity, but manages to escape and go home and not get caught again but averted for Diana, who willingly turns herself in.
- Made of Iron: Diana is in a multiple-rollover crash and is later hit by a car, without any apparent injury.
- The bounty hunter as well; he is in the same crash, taped to said car, and shot in the head. Other than a few bandages, he is fine later that day.
- Police Are Useless - Detective Reilly is completely useless, even when told exactly where the identity thief will be the following day at a specific time. This trope is basically the catalyst of the plot, in that Sandy must take matters into his own hands, and be a vigilante.
- There are some other examples, where police can't seem to apprehend anyone unless they go completely willingly, or have been utterly immobilized. They can't even seem to get someone to use a breathalyzer.
- Psycho for Hire: Skiptracer quickly proves himself to be one of these when he threatens to burn down a beauty shop to get some key information.
- Running Gag:
- Diana's throat-punching of people who make her mad.
- The made-up story that Sandy's dick got messed up in an accident.
- People cracking that "Sandy" is a girl's name.
- She Cleans Up Nicely: Diana, after a makeover.
- Sandy refers to Diana as "Bilbo" at one point, and then later calls her "Megamind".
- There is also a reference to Yoda from Star Wars and the famous "These aren't the droids you're looking for" line.
- Schmuck Bait / Bavarian Fire Drill: Diana poses as an identity protection agent and asks for all of Sandy's basic information to steal his identity. Which is actually a common method of identity theft.
- Shame If Something Happened: Played straight when the skiptracer threatens to burn down the beauty shop unless he gets the information he wants.
- Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer: Robert Patrick
- Smug Snake: Cornish again
- Take That: When Sandy's Bad Boss Harold is explaining why he and the partners deserve bonuses, despite the profitable company not giving bonus to Sandy and other staff for the past three years, he suggests Sandy read The Fountainhead as if that will explain everything.
- Specifically, he points out that Sandy's job is useless and that Sandy himself can be easily replaced with a computer program, whereas people like Cornish are the ones who bring in all the profit to the company, which pays for salaries of the "lower" people. Thus, in Cornish's mind, he deserves the bonus as his is the only job that matters. Of course, he completely ignores that without people like Sandy, he wouldn't be able to do his job. Daniel understands the value of what Sandy does and offers to 5x his salary, as well as other perks that come with being a VP.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Sandy and Diana gradually become these.
- Vomit Indiscretion Shot: Diana gives us one when she barfs on a cop.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Sort of. While the storyline with the drug dealers is resolved they are arrested in the end, it is never explained just what the hell Diana did to incur their wrath to begin with(Marisol mentions that the credit cards Diana gave her were "shit", but that's about all the motivation we get). We also never see their boss again, though he would obviously rot in jail without his lackeys.
- Same with the Skiptracer. He gets arrested as well, though having lost Diana, that's his job over.
- Actually it's mentioned briefly that 1. A card Diana sold them tipped off the police (presumably leading to the leader's arrest) and 2. He wants her death to be an example to anyone else that might think of failing him/doing something to endanger his business.
- Would Hit a Girl: Sandy. One shot in the trailer (as well as the unrated version of the film) is him hitting Diana upside the head with a guitar hard enough to knock her over.