Friday, July 11, 2014

Movie Review: "Tammy" (2014)

Director: Ben Falcone
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour, 36 minutes
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Tammy (Melissa McCarthy) is a loud, obnoxious woman who is having a bad day. She hits a deer on the way to work which wrecks her car and makes her late, causing her to be fired from her job, which means she returns home early to find out her husband is cheating on her. Tammy is ready to get the hell out of town, but without a car or any money, she has to make a deal with her alcoholic grandmother Pearl (Susan Sarandon). Pearl will loan Tammy her car and fund her excursion so long as Tammy takes her along for the ride. The two decide to go on a road trip to Niagara Falls, creating chaos and getting into trouble along the way. 

As far as Melissa McCarthy movies go, this has been the most tolerable of them all for us. McCarthy is still pretty much playing the same character in every movie she stars in, and that character is a brash loudmouth with no filter who gets herself into zany situations where she's paired with someone she initially doesn't like and has to come to a head in her life to make any progress. She has been type-cast as a fat goofball much in the way Chris Farley was (rest his sweet, funny soul), except in this case, she's not funny. As rubenesque people ourselves, we really want to like Melissa McCarthy because it's good that a larger person is getting recognition "for the team" and is landing lead roles in movies, but she just doesn't do it for us, and it's not for our lack of trying. We want her to succeed, and we don't care that she's fat! To us, it's irrelevant. What matters here is that she's just bring the laughs. We've given her tons of chances to prove her worth to us, but in the end, she keeps picking roles that put her in the same. damn. position. every. movie.

At least this time, she's surrounded by a strong supporting cast, though strong is a relative word because this movie still isn't great. It truly is a waste of talent, unfortunately. Susan Sarandon and Allison Janney provide the few laughs we had during this film. Everything else comedy wise just isn't there. Again, it's another example of McCarthy doing a bumbling, stupid, fat character who is constantly trying to use her size as the butt of several misfired jokes, attempting to push a slapstick element from the fact that she's big. We even felt a glimmer of sorrow for Tammy because of something out of her control in the beginning of the movie, and only this one time, but our empathy ends as soon as she grabs her crotch and thrusts it towards the camera, or shakes off her dandruff into a pile of cheeseburgers ready to go out to customers.

Another part of the movie we took issue with was the attempt by Kathy Bates' character Lenore to be poignant to Tammy about her life. After getting completely reamed and called names by her drunk grandma in front of a crowd of people, Kathy Bates takes it upon herself to give Tammy the profound "life's not fair" speech and basically calls her out for being a loser. Now, Tammy is in no way, shape, or form a good, honest person, but she didn't deserve to be continually berated for her grandmother's drinking problem. In fact, Lenore excuses Pearl's actions because she is an alcoholic, getting mad at Tammy because she got upset for being called names and made fun of at the party. What!? It just didn't fit, and I'm willing to bet most people would wait longer than 5 minutes after a public humiliation like Tammy experienced to speak their mind on someone else's life, simply because they have a heart.

Beyond this, the plot is aimless, jumbled, and disjointed, and the movie as a whole is super formulaic.

All in all, another "meh" movie from Melissa McCarthy. Who knows, maybe she will learn from this semi-flop and branch out into other areas of acting. While this movie is crass at times, it is definitely toned down from McCarthy's other f-bomb dropping, c-word wielding films, and unlike the other movies, we did chuckle a few times and rolled our eyes far less.

My Rating: 4/10
BigJ's Rating: 4/10
IMDB's Rating: 4.6/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 24%
Do we recommend this movie: Meh.


  1. Yep, just as I suspected. Another bomb (not to be confused with da' bomb) role for Melissa McCarthy. She was soooo awesome and fun and Suki in Gilmore Girls. What happened to that actress?! She has talent, just not in comedy. Perhaps a softer, rom-com part?

    1. Melissa McCarthy needs to get out of the same niche she's always in, STAT!! I loved her in Gilmore Girls! She will be in a movie this fall with Bill Murray and it looks like she will have a more dramatic role. We are looking forward to that one, it's called "St. Vincent" (