What's Christmas without meeting the parents?
12A, 97 Minutes. Starring: Robert De Niro, Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Dustin Hoffman, Blythe Danner, Teri Polo, Barbra Streisand, Kevin Hart, Laura Dern, Harvey Kietel & Jessica Alba. Director: Paul Weitz. Screenplay: Jim Herzfeld, John Hamburg & Larry Stuckey
Tis' the holiday season, matter of fact it's just turned Christmas right now and we've been missing that special film that gives us that comedic, comforting, yuletide feeling. Sure we could dig out the 'Uncle Bucks' and the 'Home Alones' but for something new this Christmas we need look no further now. One of Hollywood's favourite families just got bigger with an all-star cast for 'Meet The Parents: Little Fockers', the third part in Robert De Niro's latest 'Godfocker' trilogy.
The classic, first 'Meet The Parents' made the notorious gangster actor, De Niro a bona fide comedy star. 'Meet The Fockers' made these films a bona fide franchise and there is some bona fide material in this film too, trust me... but we'll leave that hilarious bit out, it is Christmas after all.
So if the name hasn't given it away, this sequel is all about meeting Greg and Pam Focker's (played again brilliantly by Ben Stiller and Teri Polo respectively) kids. The twins are about to share a fifth birthday, but there's a lot more going on then the stresses of planning a kids birthday. For one Greg Focker has more on his plate, as does his son, and in turn Focker senior has even more of that on his face. Also De Niro's Jack Byrne's is at the lie detector machine again (shockingly) and is up to his usual paranoid, never really retired from the CIA tricks.
If that isn't bad enough, Jessica Alba's pharmaceutical drug rep character is after Stiller (yep that is a problem) and also has some Google issues with actor Andy Garcia. To top it off the brilliant return of Owen Wilson as Pam Fockers candle holding, charm and cheese hoarding ex boyfriend, just makes matters even worse and funnier.
So expect a lot more hilarity and insane situations from a family that likes to burn altars and serve foreskin as fondue. If you thought the writers and directors had run out of ideas you'd be wrong because this latest installment of 'Meet The Parents' is 'focking' funny. With all the regulars returning and an all-star supporting cast this film is a sure fire hit for the warm, good natured mood of the festive period.
De Niro and Stiller are once again on stellar form, providing the perfect mix and once again playing off each other so well. No matter who's watching who, it's funny. The father and son in law conflict reaches all new heights and there is even a fight...which believe me like they say in the film was long coming, but oh is it worth the wait.
Teri Polo and Blythe Danner once again play the suffering women perfectly and those 'Little Fockers' are adorable two. Also Streisand and Hoffman once again provide some of the most laughable moments in the film, taking it to the extremes one more hilarious time after another. There is also great support form an always funny Kevin Hart, an always game Harvey Kietel and the always good to see Laura Dern. Plus if your a guy you'll love seeing Jessica Alba go crazy, trust me...TRUST ME!
While trying to steal Greg Focker's wife Owen Wilson almost steals the show as Kevin. After a great turn in the first movie and a brief cameo in the second film Owen is back, owning each scene with his chemistry with long time collaborator Stiller and his undeniable comedy charm. It's good to see him back here. He doesn't miss a beat.
From ball pools to middle of the night medical procedures Stiller and De Niro go through a lot and from lasagna to turkey carvings you going to make a meal out of this great comedy. This old dog learns some new tricks too, with more up to date, off the cuff jokes. As does De Niro, who Spy's easy as Google replaces his old hidden cameras. This results in some funny uses of YouTube and those infamous YouTube fan videos (and you thought the video tapes where funny). Everything is here from the circle of trust to Mr. Jinx and even if the formula is getting a tad old, the familiarity of this favourite family is welcoming. So while you make sure you have a Merry Christmas do make sure you pay the Fockers a brief visit this holiday period, because you won't regret it. TIM DAVID HARVEY.