There are two big laughs in MEET THE FOCKERS – but I can’t remember where they are.
Sequel to the minimally-superior MEET THE PARENTS, this movie once again makes a fool of Robert De Niro, continues to make a neb of Ben Stiller, while orbiting megastars Barbra Streisand and Dustin Hoffman add little or nothing with their “oversexed teenagers” routine as Stiller’s hippie parents. Gwyneth Paltrow’s mother and Stiller’s blond fiancé get their screentime on as plot conveniences.
Silly lines (“I am going to be Pamela Martha Focker. I know how that sounds but I don’t care!”), amateur looping (“Step on the gas, Gaylord!” – a looped line just as we see a cop), contrived plot (an unnecessary baby nephew hovers, pets featured for specific gags, then disappear completely, people going through motions only to end up at next plot point), and shallow characters, it is the star power – and star power alone – that keeps this poster-movie for mediocrity afloat.
The Byrnes family (headed by De Niro) meets the Focker parents (Streisand and Hoffman) and – so the junkets inform us – “all hell breaks loose.”
Yes, this is hell.