Saturday, 31 December 2016

#87 WHY HIM?

Starring Bryan Cranston, James Franco, Zoey Deutch, Megan Mullally, Griffin Gluck and Keegan-Michael Key. Written by Ian Helfer and John Hamburg. Directed by John Hamburg. Budget $38 million. Running time 111 minutes. Certificate 15.

Bryan Cranston is Mr. Blah Blah, he's the 55 year-old CEO of a print works that's over $300,000 in the red and sinking fast! He's got a 21 year-old daughter called Thingie, a 15 year-old son called, probably Jnr but I don't remember he's only there to provide awkward jokes and asides, then there's his wife, Mrs. Blah Blah the wonderful Megan Mullally who is criminally wasted in this 'film'. Finally there is Laird, played by Franco Nero, he's Thingie's boyfriend who just so happens to be a billionaire tech genius with no social boundaries who says and does whatever he thinks or feels, whenever he wants regardless of consequences, he's the living embodiment of the millennial generation. He's got an omniscient computer voiced by Kaley Cuoco and a sidekick/bodyguard/estate-manger called Gustave played brilliantly by Keegan-Michael Key.

The plot sees Bry, Meg and Sco head to California to meet Ste's boyfriend Laird for the first time at Christmas, gosh I bet that's not going to go well. I bet there's going to be a clash between father and future son-in-law which will see them smack heads in a series of increasingly disastrous and embarrassing incidents before it all comes good in the final act!

Well, amazingly and get ready for this! It all goes off fine. Within minutes of meeting Ned Flemming (Bryan Cranston) and Laird hit it off and from then on it's 100 minutes of the two nervously bonding and accepting each other, despite their differences, learning a few very gentle life lessons before the happy ending when Laird and Steph decide not to get married but to wait until she's finished college. Oh and Bry's buisness is saved by his future son-in-law.

Meandering along at a gentle putt-putt speed of let's say a Love-Boat ride or a half charged golf cart, this film has precisely two funny sequences, one involves a toilet and a lack of toilet paper and the other involves a recurring gag where in Laird's estate manager, Gustave launches surprise attacks upon his boss to enhance his parkour and fighting skills and before you can say, hey Pink Panther! Don't worry, the film knows this and explains very carefully that this sequence has been ripped off by those earlier better films starring Peter Sellers and Burt Kwouk by having the three characters discussing the Pink Panther films which they decide are racist.

Apart from all that hilarity, there's a telegraphed joke about a piece of modern artwork which involved a dead moose suspended in a giant fish tank of its own piss, a guest appearance of the joke rock band Kiss and a really creepy party that sees Megan Mullally wants some Little Cheese.

Less than mildly funny but utterly unoffensive and lacking so many teeth that it doesn't even make your blood boil or your bile rise. Indeed this ends a year of Meh with a satisfying and resounding meh.


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