98 Min | Comedy – Romance | December 2010
IMDB Rating: 5.4
Director: Paul Weitz
Starring: Ben Stiller, Teri Polo, Robert De Niro
Little Fockers Review: In Little Fockers, Ben Stiller, Robert De Niro, Terri Polo, Blythe Danner, Dustin Hoffman and Barbara Steisand all return for this third go-around in the series. Taking the helm is Paul Weitz (Jay Roach, director of the first two films, serves as a producer), from a script by John Hamburg. This time, when Jack Burns (De Niro) is almost killed by a heart attack, he enlists Greg Focker (Stiller) to become the “God-focker”, the new head of the Burns/Focker family when he dies. At the same time, numerous subplots play out (including Greg trying to get his two children into a good school, and a subplot with Jessica Alba about Greg’s possibly unfaithfulness to his wife), which tie into the story here and there.
On paper, this isn’t a bad set-up for humor, but Little Fockers is fairly sloppy – the juggling of plots and subplots feels a little convoluted, and it looses focus fairly often. Also, though there are plenty of chuckles, all of the “big laughs” are largely unfunny, and are often just crude. (Ex. In the first film, the infamous “Grandmother’s ashes” scene, or in the second film, the “fondue” disaster is replaced by a violent scene this time around where Greg cuts his hand, spraying blood everywhere. It’s actually more cruel than funny/uncomfortable.) It’s like Weiz and Hamburg knew they had to try and out-due to absurd jokes from the previous films, but went too far.
The acting in Little Fockers is all halfway decent. De Niro and Stiller still play well against each other, Hoffman is still a riot, Streisand is still the hip, fun mom you wish you’d had. The child actors portraying Greg’s children aren’t that great though, and to be honest, despite being the film’s namesake (they are the “Little Fockers”), Greg’s kids are more of a subplot to the movie than it’s focus. And I will give credit where credit is due, Little Fockers is very nice-looking, and was well-shot and edited. But the film is too much a mixed bag. There are no big laughs, but rather a lot of fun little chuckles, and the plot, though interesting, is very disposable.