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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Movie Review: Tammy

When everything around you falls apart, why wouldn't you want to take a road trip? In July 2014, we watched as Tammy hit the road... with grandma.

Directing this 96 minute comedy is Ben Falcone.

Making their way through this flick is: Melissa McCarthy as Tammy, Susan Sarandon as Pearl, Kathy Bates as Lenore, Mark Duplass as Bobby, Sandra Oh as Susanne, Gary Cole as Earl,  Allison Janney as Deb, Ben Falcone as Keith Morgan and Dan Aykroyd as Don.

Tammy is having some trouble in life because work and her marriage aren't going so well. So when everything hits that breaking point, Tammy decides to leave town. Problem is, Tammy's car is broken down,
so she asks to borrow her mom's car. After getting a no on the borrowing of the car, Tammy is hit with an offer to use grandma's car... as long as grandma gets to come along for the ride. This offer is something Tammy would rather refuse, but what other choice does she have. So now, these two ladies hit the road together. Who knows, maybe this trip will help them both find what they need in life.  

After watching McCarthy's other comedies, The Heat (2013) and Identity Thief (2013), I thought, cool this should be a good one. So I settled in and waited for the laughs to come rolling my way. And I waited...  

Apparently, Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone had a lot of time to fill in life. So they filled it by taking multiple jobs on this flick. They not only co-wrote the story but also starred in it, and then Falcone sat down to direct it all. Unfortunately, what they came up with for a story shows that maybe they took on a little too much and should have focused on just one job. Sadly, the story isn't anything new, nor do we see anything new comedy-wise. It's about an immature (and kind of stupid) individual that needs to grow up. So through (comical) mishap and adventure Tammy is forced to look at herself and figure out where she's going. 

As far as the playthrough goes, I ran into a lot of things that bothered me. I would say the biggest problem I had with this comedic story was... it wasn't that funny. Most of the time it ran more annoying than funny. After a few it just seemed like the "jokes" or "gags" were starting to repeat themselves. Upside, the pace stays pretty even and keeps everything moving with very little slowing down. So I never got bored watching it, it just wasn't as entertaining as it could have been.
                        

The cast had star power names like Sarandon, Bates and (a completely underutilized) Aykroyd. Yet none of these names could do anything to help this flick. Bates did really good and I liked her character, but she doesn't come in until later in the film and doesn't do a whole lot. Seeing Aydroyd's name in movie credits is always cool, except here. Because you see his name and think awesome! What's he going to do here? Well, he says hi... and bye, a quick two second role through. Seriously! Why they didn't find or make a bigger role for Aykroyd I have no clue. He might have been able to bring some laughs to this one... that would have been funny. Now I will say McCarthy has talent, and I've thought her other movies were pretty good. Here however, McCarthy just didn't have the right co-star character that (in past movies) helped balance out her style of acting.

It's kind of like how every wild character is usually paired up with a straight-laced character. Now both characters can act (overly) extreme because they're balanced by their opposite. Making the actions or reactions funny. Not having that piece makes the character Tammy mostly annoying, and kind of sad. Which I'm sure is what they were going for when making the character, but it was too much. Saradon's character wasn't a balance, as a matter of fact, most of the time she ended up tipping the scale toward the wild side. Making two characters that I started wishing would pull a Thelma & Louise so I could get to the credits. Also, I'm starting to notice McCarthy plays the same-ish kind of brash, forceful, rude characters. Not really stretching that acting skill...

Overall, yeah you will find some laughs here and there, but not enough to make this one worth the time or money to rush right out to the theater. I'm trying to keep in mind that neither Falcone or McCarthy have a lot of writing experience between the two of them. So hopefully their next project will turn out better than this one.

It's rated R for language.

2 stars


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