Remind me to never again question the truthiness of the Tooth Fairy, lest I’m sentenced to a two-week stint as a Tooth Fairy Helper. (And here I am thinking I’m such a good guy for throwing a couple bucks under my kid’s pillow.)

Such is the fate leveled upon Derek Thompson (Dwayne Johnson) in Tooth Fairy after he, needing some flow for a poker game, steals his girlfriend’s kid’s tooth fairy stash. So to make amends, he’s summoned to Tooth Fairy Land to receive his wings, magic wand, and bottle of Amnesia Dust… so he can learn his lesson and become a better person.

You see, Derek’s a washed-up hockey player, nicknamed (ha ha!) ‘The Tooth Fairy’, due to his propensity for violence (and the resulting de-toothing of opponents) on the ice.

Anyone think he’ll learn his lesson and become a better person? Show of hands…

Yes, the story is more than a little predictable, so the journey (not the destination) becomes key. And Tooth Fairy actually works. Assuming you’re seeing it with children in tow (why would you, otherwise?), it’s fun. It’s harmless (age appropriate for, say, 4 and up– the only issue is the hockey ‘violence’.) And it’s so much more enjoyable than that chipmunk movie.

Credit the cast first and foremost. Johnson plays his part straight, which must have been a bit difficult, considering the circumstances (and pink tutu), but he pulls it off. Julie Andrews is great the head fairy, and Ashley Judd does all she can with the rather innocuous role as Derek’s girlfriend Carly.

The supporting cast is even better. Stephen Merchant (of ‘co-creator of The Office‘ fame) is perfect as Tracy, a Tooth Fairy Land social worker who takes great delight in showing Derek the ropes. Add a couple too-brief, hilarious cameos from Billy Crystal (as the Fairy Gadget guy) and Seth MacFarlane (as a ‘pusher’ fairy), and Tooth Fairy becomes a pretty watchable flick.

There are times you’ll find yourself wishing the movie could make up its mind (It’s a redemption movie! It’s an underdog sports movie! It’s a cute little kids movie!) and there are a few-too-many subplots (There’s a young hockey star gunning for Derek’s glory! Carly’s angsty teenage son doesn’t get along with Derek!), but overall it’s pretty good.

…and that’s despite the fact that no one answers the most pressing question:

What does the Tooth Fairy do with all those teeth? Seriously– somewhere there’s a room with millions and millions of little teeth in it.

What’s that all about?

3/5 stars