#REVIEW: “DIRTY GRANDPA”
In a way, DIRTY GRANDPA from Director/Writer Dan Mazer (Borat, Bruno) is a bit of a throwback to the quintessential raunchy Comedy. It is offensive, outright lewd actually and a double-fisted bird flip to the political correctness of the world we live in today. But if you can forgive this and realize how through its ridiculousness that it is all in good fun, you’ll be just fine.
Jason (Zac Efron), a handsome and promising young lawyer, is about to get married in a week to beautiful Meredith (Julianne Hough) who is obsessed with their wedding being perfect. In untimely fashion, his grandmother passes away, reuniting him with his grandpa Dick (Robert De Niro). Tasked with having to drive him to Florida during Spring Break with a stop-off to see an old friend Stinky (Danny Glover) along the way, Jason finds himself panicking about his wedding and increasingly-annoyed at widowed Dick who is determined after 40 years of marriage and 15 sex-free years to get it on once again. With his late wife’s blessing, of course.
The duo meet lusty Lenore (Aubrey Plaza), Jason‘s former photography classmate Shadia (Zoey Deutch) and their flamboyantly-gay BFF Bradley (Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman). After convincing a reluctant Jason to join him on a wild night of partying in Daytona Beach as he pursues a willing Lenore relentlessly, Dick gets his uptight grandson thinking about what it is he really wants in life. The wedding bells however, are ringing ever so loud. After getting himself into some trouble and the flames igniting with Shadia, we wonder what Jason will do come wedding day. And also, will Dick ever get laid?
DIRTY GRANDPA despite its tie-ins to today and nods to issues of now, including a scene addressing Homophobia, feels somewhat familiar. Themes of wedding jitters and self discovery in adulthood have been told time and again on the big screen, but what carries DIRTY GRANDPA ultimately is Robert De Niro’s commitment to Dick, firing on all cylinders with a tank full of dirty jokes delivered with a precise sharpness, thanks to Writer John Phillips.
Although we never sense truly that Efron is comfortable in his role, ass bared for much of the Film, his Fanbase remains loyal and will find plenty to love as the camera just flatters him to no end… even is semen-stained harem pants. Although Aubrey Plaza dangerously has been typecast in recent roles as the empowered “super-slut”, we actually kinda love her pairing with De Niro here. She’s definitely in on the joke. This unfortunately leaves little room to shine for others in the talented Supporting Cast like Dermot Mulroney as Jason‘s Dad, Julianne Hough and Zoey Deutch, the latter whose love story with Efron‘s Jason is buried beneath the heaping pile of sex jokes. And to be honest, what DIRTY GRANDPA needed more of was that bit of heart to place it in the realm of other Sex Comedy greats like American Pie, The 40-Year-Old Virgin and There’s Something About Mary.
Amidst these winter blahs, we need a bit of cheer and DIRTY GRANDPA does just that. VVS Films release it on Friday, January 22, 2016.