News

REVIEW: Melissa McCarthy loses steam in ‘Tammy’

REVIEW: Melissa McCarthy loses steam in ‘Tammy’

/Warner Bros.

Genre: Comedy | Run Time: 96 min | Rated: R
Director: Ben Falcone | Starring: Melissa McCarthy, Susan Sarandon, Kathy Bates

By: George Wolf

Though I grudgingly admit there’s a Melissa McCarthy backlash out there, I’m having no part of it. She’s an often hilarious comic powerhouse who has been on a roll since her Oscar-nominated breakthrough in Bridesmaids.

Her latest, though, slows that roll considerably.

Tammy is McCarthy’s first project as a headliner, from a script she co-wrote with her husband Ben Falcone (who also directs). Deciding to make it a road movie may have been their first mistake.

In one very bad day, Tammy (McCarthy) manages to lose her job, her car and her husband. Her mother (Allison Janney) offers little more than tough love, but Tammy’s grandmother Pearl (Susan Sarandon) has cash, wheels, and a travelin’ jones.

Off they go.

You can imagine how road movies are tempting for comedy writers, but the gimmick too often amounts to taking the path of least resistance. Got a few ideas for some randomly absurd skits? Just connect them with a stretch of highway or some winding country roads, and you’ve got yourself a movie!

McCarthy is a better bet than most to pull it off, and she showed that last year, scoring solid laughs in Identity Thief. But, that film also gave her the benefit of a better script, a great straight man in Jason Bateman, and a much more solid premise.

Tammy offers precious little support on any front. Sarandon, playing well above her age, settles for overacting in place of comic timing, while only a whisp of exposition is offered before they hit the highway.

McCarthy, through sheer force of her onscreen presence, does manage to find a little funny, but the glimpses of how this character might have carried a film are never fully developed. McCarthy and Falcone may one day become a filmmaking power couple, but Tammy proves they still need a bit more seasoning.

Verdict-2-0-Stars

Recent Headlines

in Music

Ludacris, Chrissy Teigen to host Billboard Awards

chrissyteigen

The rapper/actor and the model will host the awards show in May.

in Music

Rolling Stones announce North American stadium tour

rollingstones

The "Zip Code" tour will once again reunite singer Mick Jagger, drummer Charlie Watts and guitarists Keith Richards and Ronnie Wood.

in Music

Christina Aguilera to hit the stage at ACM Awards

christina

The "Genie in a Bottle" hitmaker will join a surprise artist for "a special duet."

in Music

Mariah Carey working on movie based on her hits

mariah

Filmmaker Brett Ratner denied rumors that he's dating the newly single singer, insisting they're working together on a movie based on one of her hit songs.

in Music

Zayn Malik solo song emerges online

zaynmalik

A song touted as Zayn Malik's first solo since his exit from One Direction has surfaced.