Jim Carrey has come a long way since his breakout performance in Ace Ventura: Pet Detective. He’s also proven himself a versatile actor, able to deftly tackle a myriad of different roles in comedies, dramas, and even blockbuster superhero movies, picking up several Golden Globe and BAFTA nominations along the way.
His newest release is a sequel to Dumb and Dumber, one of the comedies from Carrey’s breakout year in Hollywood. The essence of lead character Lloyd Christmas is right there in the title, and while Carrey’s career may have just come full circle, he’s certainly played roles at all levels of intelligence.
The following are just a handful of Jim Carrey’s movie characters, listed in order of IQ. With performances spanning four decades, it’s impossible to include all of his most famous parts. Feel free to comment and tell us where you think the characters we left out would fit in Jim Carrey’s Dumbness Spectrum:
Dumbest: Lloyd Christmas
Was Lloyd “Dumb” and co-star Jeff Daniels’ Harry “Dumber” or the other way around? Some questions are too difficult for even the smartest of us. However, one thing is certain: Lloyd Christmas is the dumbest of Jim Carrey’s repertoire of cinematic roles.
Dumber: Ace Ventura
Dumb: Stanley Ipkiss
Sure, Stanley Ipkiss could quote classic films and old-timey cartoons as well as any film school student, but you’ve got to be pretty dumb to put an old wooden mask anywhere near your face without knowing jack about where it’s been. Plus, his dog had to break him out of jail. Dogs are smart but they shouldn’t be smarter than you.
Average Intelligence: Truman Burbank
To his credit, Truman Burbank did figure out that his entire life was televised for people’s entertainment. Then again, it took him thirty years to do so. C’mon, Truman, you should’ve caught on by the time you could drive.
Smart: Joel Barish
At its heart, film school favorite Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is the story of a man, Joel Barish, trying to outsmart his own brain. While the memories of his lost true love disappear, Barish has to find creative ways to hide important moments and experiences deep in his subconscious, and eventually succeeds in reconnecting with his ex at Montauk. Pretty smart stuff.
Smarter: Liar Liar
While Eternal Sunshine is a hit in film school dorms, Liar Liar is probably more popular with law students. Fletcher Reede, after all, must’ve passed his bar at some point, and that’s no small feat. But a lawyer that can win a case without telling a single lie? That takes some next-level brainpower.
Smartest: The Riddler
For starters, the guy’s name is E. Nigma. Carrey’s supervillain also managed to build a machine that could read people’s minds and almost took over Gotham City, all while presumably tailoring his own outfits—multi-tasking is a sure sign of intelligence. But what puts The Riddler at the smartest end of the spectrum is the fact that he figured out Batman’s identity. It’s safe to say he’d probably also find a better way out of that rhino.