‘Tammy’ and new movies

By on July 9, 2014

Funny just not selling

Blame it on whatever — the weather, maybe — but folks just weren’t showing up at the movie theater over the blockbuster Fourth of July weekend. Last year on the holiday weekend “Despicable Me 2” and “The Lone Ranger” had people flocking to theaters. This year was a huge flop. But not everything is a loss.

The much awaited documentary “Deliver Us from Evil” from filmmaker Amy Berg (“West of Memphis”) hit screens and brought in an estimated $15 million over the long weekend. Berg’s last film, “West of Memphis,” shed light on the convicted then freed teenagers known as the West Memphis three. She is now back on the trail of justice as “Deliver Us from Evil” chronicles the life of Father Oliver O’Grady, a Catholic priest who was relocated to various parishes around the United States during the ‘70’s. The movie suggests the moves were an attempt by the Catholic Church to cover up his rape of dozens of children. The true tale ranked third at the box office.

Making much less of an impact was Disney’s “Earth to Echo” making it only to sixth on the box office chart during its first run in theaters. The flop chronicles the adventures of several young kids who must help an extraterrestrial being return to his home. Deemed as “E.T.” meets “Stand By Me,” “Earth to Echo” is a story people were not buying. Speaking of things from space, “Transformers: Age of Extinction” was back on top taking in an estimated $95 million worldwide to stay at number one in the box office. Not even popular funny girl Melissa McCarthy could topple these robots …


McCarthy is Tammy, a not-so-lovable loser who, when we first meet her, just lost her job at a fast food restaurant. Everything is downhill from there. After discovering her husband (Oscar winning writer Nat Faxon) is in a relationship with the neighbor lady (Oscar nominated actress Toni Collette), Tammy moves home with her mom (Allison Janney). At home she connects with her hard-boozing grandmother (Susan Sarandon) and the two hit the road looking for adventure. Of course, nothing goes smoothly for the troubled troupe as they wind up in jail only to be saved by family and friends (the likes of Dan Aykroyd, Sandra Oh, and Kathy Bates).

“The unfunniest comedy I’ve ever seen,” writes Tom S. of Lancaster.

Melissa McCarthy, lauded for her humorous performances in “Bridesmaids” and “Identity Thief,” gives a lukewarm and less than stellar turn in “Tammy.” (Photo courtesy of usmagazine.com)

Melissa McCarthy, lauded for her humorous performances in “Bridesmaids” and “Identity Thief,” gives a lukewarm and less than stellar turn in “Tammy.” (Photo courtesy of usmagazine.com)

I can agree with that. “Tammy” just does not work on so many levels. Sure, there are parts that will make everyone laugh but there is no spark between McCarthy and Sarandon and the acting gets lost. The story is pointless. The bits of seriousness and social commentary detract from any kind of humor, making “Tammy” a pedestrian attempt at a hard-hitting comedy.

No amount of crotch grabbing, belly flopping, or awkward situations are going to help McCarthy overcome this stinker. The jokes are crass, misguided, boring, and forced. There was more laughter in the theater during the trailer for “Sex Tape,” which comes out on July 18 — save your money for this comedy starring Jason Segel and Cameron Diaz (who reunites with director Jake Kasdan, “Bad Teacher”).

Even a bad movie can have a good day. “Tammy” reached the No. 2 spot during its opening weekend, but it is bound to fall rather quickly. Besides having to contend with “Sex Tape” this flick will be up against “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” (July 11), “Planes: Fire & Rescue” (July 18), and what I think will be the best movie of the summer, “Lucy” (July 25). So, enjoy the view, “Tammy.” It won’t last long.

Agree or disagree? Reel Reviews works like this: 1) Watch a movie 2) Send suggestions, comments and criticism to Michael at somepromcu@gmail.com.

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