Susan Granger's review of 'We're the Millers'
Published 2:24 pm, Friday, August 16, 2013
Just after TV's "Friends" concluded, I had the opportunity -- on separate occasions -- to interview then-married Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston. Pitt yearned to become a father, yet Aniston was determined to be a movie star. Pitt has achieved his desire, while Aniston still wallows in the stems and seeds of raunchy, pot-smuggling comedies like this.
After his stash is stolen, David Clark (Jason Sudeikis), a small-time Denver drug dealer, is desperate to avoid the wrath of his distributor/buddy Brad Gurdlinger (Ed Helms). When he's offered $100,000 to smuggle a "smidge" of marijuana across the Mexican border, David de-
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cides his best disguise is as the RV-driving father with an all-American family. So he re-cruits Rose O'Reilly (Aniston), the stripper-next-door whose ex has left her with financial debts, along with a nerdy, naive neighbor Kenny (British actor Will Poulter) and Casey (Emma Roberts, niece of Julia), a sullen runaway. The fact that David is lonely is a given, as is the formulaic road trip that can only lead to suburban domesticity.
Hobbled by a hackneyed script assembled by Bob Fisher and Steve Faber ("Wedding Crashers") and Sean Anders and John Morris ("Hot Tub Time Machine"), director Rawson Marshall Thurber ("Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story," "The Mysteries of Pittsburgh") makes each subversive set-piece utterly predictable, including the sweet-natured, sappy conclusion. There's the stereotypical drug lord (Tomer Sisley), his henchman (Matthew Willig) and horny cop (Luis Guzman). As a strait-laced Christian couple whose marriage needs sexual spice, scene-stealing Nick Offerman ("Parks and Recreation") and Kathryn Hahn ("Girls") add needed humor.
This is 37-year-old Jason Sudeikis' first film after leaving "Saturday Night Live." From here, hopefully, it's onward and upward. As for the 44-year-old Aniston, her streak of crude comedies continues, following "Horrible Bosses" and "Wanderlust." Perhaps it's time for a career transition from cover girl to character actress.
On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "We're the Millers" is a distasteful, mediocre 6, concluding with obligatory outtakes that are funnier than the film itself.