Friday, April 6, 2018

FATHER FIGURES (2017) (Movie Review)


Label: Warner Bros.
Region Code: A
Rating: R
Duration: 113 Minutes
Audio: English DTS-HD MA Surround 5.1 with Optional English Subtitles 
Video: 1080p HD Widescreen (2.40:1) 
Director: Lawrence Sher 
Cast: Owen Wilson, Ed Helms, J.K. Simmons, Katt Williams, Terry Bradshaw, Ving Rhames, Harry Shearer, June Squibb, Christopher Walken, Glenn Close

Father Figures (2017) is a road comedy starring Owen Wilson (Bottle Rocket) and Ed Helms (Vacation) as twin brothers who find out everything they thought they knew about their late father was a lie - that the guy in the photos their mom told them was their dad who died when they were very young was just a college friend, that's she's not sure who their father was. She explains that it was the 70's and apparently mom got around the New York disco scene. This startling revelation about their mother's promiscuity births a road trip with the brothers taking to the road in hopes of identifying their father by tracking down mom's former lovers, beginning with former footballer Terry Bradshaw playing himself. 

The trip evolves into a brother-bonding experience punctuated by the usual sibling bickering and bathroom humor, throw in a could-be incestuous detour and you have all the makings of a standard issue r-rated comedy with cameos from J.K. Simmons (Spider-Man) as a financial banker turned car thief and Christopher Walken (The Dead Zone) as a veterinarian with a connectin to the family, plus comedian Katt Williams as a hitchhiker they pick up along the way.

Wilson and Helms are simply riffing on character types they've played many, many time before, there's nothing new under the sun here, but they have a decent chemistry and play off each other well enough for this middle of the road road trip. While there's ample opportunity to explore the characters with more depth this one comes off fairly shallow, though I did find myself laughing quite a bit so it's not bad. Not bad, but not original or particularly clever in it's humor either, but I'm the sort of guy who thinks an adolescent  kid and an grown man pissing on each other at the urinal is funny stuff, and then Glenn Close brings it all home at the end with a heartwarming twist that I'll be honest, brought some moisture to my tear ducts, I couldn't help myself, I'm a softie when it comes down to it. 

Father Figures is a pretty average comedy, but it's an average comedy with a fair amount of laughs and some good onscreen brotherly ribbing/bonding between Helms and Wilson. I don't expect much from a mainstream comedy these days, and this didn't offer much either, but it made me laugh and had some heart, so mission accomplished, that's all I require. 

Blu-ray Special Features:
- Deleted Scenes
- Hilarious Gag Reel

Father Figures (2017) arrives on Blu-ray/DVD/Digital combo from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment with a gag reel and some deleted scenes as extras, it's also available streaming on various digital platforms. 

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