I was pretty certain what to expect from Little Fockers, the follow up to the box-office success that was Meet The Parents and Meet The Fockers, and how accurate my expectations were the moment this rubbish began.
Ten years have passed since the last film, Greg “Gaylord” (Ben Stiller) and Pam Focker (Teri Polo) are happily married with two children, and more importantly Greg is finally on a good working par with his father in law Jack Byrnes (Robert De Niro). After Jack’s other son-in-law turns out to be a cheating low-life, Jack looks for a new person to pass on the family tie. But can Greg prove that he is man enough to take on this duty? With Greg unable to host his twins birthday party (some issues with the builders of the new house where the party would’ve taken place), there is no surprise Jack becomes skeptical of Greg again and there you have the main problem. It’s the same old story. The Father-in-law who is cynical of his son-in-law. The concept of the jokes has just completely run its course. Literally, the joke is old!
Not only that, they just keep on recycling the same jokes; playing on Jack’s ability to recruit his government aids when he needs to, which isn’t funny. Jinxy cat, the cat that was flown to the twins birthday party and then chases a lizard. Why? What was the point of that? “I am watching you Greg” – rubbish. It’s boring, write something new! This whole idea of surveillance, spying on people and finding what they’re hiding. Once again – the joke is old. They even try to build on old jokes with newer versions of the joke which are even blander then repeating the same joke – Jack Byrnes finding myspace for the first time and not knowing what google is. Not funny.
One strength of Meet The Fockers was that they used inappropriate jokes which were relevant and funny. Here the inappropriate jokes are utterly misplaced. Greg stabbing his finger when carving the turkey, Greg’s son throwing up on him when he’s just given him a God-Focker like speech and then there are the children. I hate to say it but the filmmakers have cast some of the most annoying, fairly-wooden child actors. Giving the child actors lines about “boners” and asking about “whether the female genitalia excretes poop” is just completely misguided and not funny.
Also the jokes are predictable. Obviously Jessica Alba is going to try it on with Greg when he is at his most shallow point, obviously sand is going to burry Jack when he is standing behind and directing a reversing sand truck; and obviously Greg’s son will walk in on Greg injecting Jack’s penis with adrenaline to reduce the blood rush.
Also, what’s with all the star cameos – Laura Dern as the scatty teacher of the private school, Greg is trying to get his kids into. Jessica Alba as the drug rep trying to seduce Greg and sell him erectile dysfunction medicine and Harvey Kietel as the lousy builder trying to sort out Greg’s new house. Is it even necessary? It’s just so obvious Harvey Kietel was brought in for one vocal battle with Robert De Niro, which as it turns out was utterly pointless.
The best bits of the film are filled by Owen Wilson and his conversations about his spiritual journey. The character is kind of similar to what he played in You, Me and Dupree. When he performs a special massaging technique on Greg’s son, which is pretty much what you would see Jack Bauer do to a crime lord, I have to say I kind of cracked up. His talks about his good friend the buddha are also highly amusing.
Having said that I was in a pretty small audience of about ten people and throughout there were hardly any laughs registered. I remember watching Meet The Fockers in the cinema and the amount of laughs ringing through the screening was staggering. Clearly this comedy series has sunk really low and out of fashion, and in essence it’s come to the end of his run. Apparently a small conversation at the end of the movie between Greg and his father has left suggestion another Fockers film will be heading our way. No way. Never. Just leave it alone. Bury it now and lay it to rest. I don’t mean to rub salt into wounds but the best part of this cinema trip was watching the trailer for the new Simon Pegg and Nick Frost movie Paul. Now there’s a comedy with real jokes.
If you’re still tempted to watch this rubbish, here’s the trailer for Little Fockers: