Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Movie Review: Dirty Grandpa (2016)

Dan Mazer’s crude, mindless “Dirty Grandpa” resembles watching a friend’s mediocre improv troupe do an extended spring break sketch. What’s more, your friend simply happens to be Robert De Niro.

Mr. De Niro plays Dick, the horny, foul-mouthed grandfather of a corporate lawyer, Jason (Zac Efron), who is about to be married. Recently widowed, Dick drags Jason to Florida on the pretense of having a nostalgic trip, but it soon turns into a reckless debauch. Dick spews nearly nonsensical invective and, vaporizing all subtext, goes lurking here and there for sex, which he has not had in years. Jason, meanwhile, fields calls from his upset fiancée, gets wasted and reconnects with an old classmate (Zoey Deutch).

Most of the comedy is along the lines of phallic graffiti on a metro poster. You can’t question Mr. De Niro’s dedication, be that as it may: In one of the numerous scenes played for shock value, he does a surprised-while-shocking off muffle. A long time of talking blue streaks in Martin Scorsese movies make him a natural for playing this alpha-male senior.

The screenplay, by John M. Phillips, is what might as well be called a toddler discovering curse words. However, a few riffs draw laughs: Aubrey Plaza reaches some personal seventh heaven exchanging aggressive come-ons with Mr. De Niro; Jason Mantzoukas thrives as a flagrant drug dealer; and as Jason’s strait-laced father, Dermot Mulroney does a lot with a little deadpan delivery.

Heart-to-heart chats between Dick and his fuming grandson land on cue, as if in a straight family comedy. These get filthy, since Grandpa’s involved, and the ridiculous whiplash amongst sentiment and filth recommends a parody of the genre. This is most likely done on purpose, which actually helps the movie, but, unfortunately, so are the lazy vulgar gags, which don’t.

Dirty Grandpa” is rated R (Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian). Torrents of profanity, with graphic nudity and drugs.

Written by Sukanya Roy
Artist, Critic, Writer, Photographer, Movie buff, Graphic Designer, Literature and Geography enthusiast, Soccer fan, and Imaginative.

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