Dax Sheppard plays a one-liner filled everyman who loses his job the same day that both his kooky mother and his geeky step-cousin move into his house while he is attempting to lower his sperm count as his wife wants to conceive a child. The setup is their right off the bat, the comic motions not hesitating to begin, and they play out in a traditional comic format that is both familiar and harmless.
Diane Keaton delivers a hearty bit of scenery chewing in every scene she has as the mother, but she manages to be be entertaining so she can hardly be condemned. Granted, the over-bearing mother shtick is not trailblazing but she manages to traverse through it with dedication to her character (as over the top as it can be) and enough of a smirk towards the camera that the audience can realize that she’s mainly just having a bit of fun.
Dax Sheppard gets the lion’s share of the best lines as he is onscreen in basically every frame. An endearing Mike White as the cousin does not exactly steal any scenes but certainly makes for charming support to our hero, often becoming a soft ying to Dax’s sarcastic yang. Meanwhile, Liv Tyler, I suppose, is cute enough as the wife to simply show up and say her lines. She has two underwear scenes, which are her most memorable sadly…I say that not for the typical male reasons but because she honestly did not have much to do otherwise. She was thrown an acceptable line here and there. I feel sympathy for her more than anything.
The story has some amusing situations, such as turning a funeral into a internet-forum type ‘flame war’ (battle of insults), and the actors seem to have a good sense of comic timing (once again, Dax being the foremost in this).
Presented in1.78 Anamorphic Widescreen. The picture looks plenty polished and clear. The colours and shades have a perfectly fine balance.
I have mixed feelings about the 5.1 Surround sound offered. The mixing for the Surround is rather good. There is no real score but there is some very good use of it, such as the echo in a church, music at a bowling alley and environmental sounds (including intrusive ducks) at a bridal shower scene. Meanwhile, the dubbing of the voices seems a little off at points and Liv Tyler’s voice is overly breathy and kind of irritating. The latter largely being an actor’s voice methinks but it still did not help.
Subtitles offered in English and optional Spanish.
Behind the Scenes: Interviews and clips about how nice it was to do the film and how nuch they like Diane Keaton as well as…ugh…good grief I’m dozing off just writing about this 7 minutes of useless DVD filler.
Director Commentary: No surprises. Decent enough.
Overall, this an acceptable, amusing, sitcom-level comedy that would make a nice rental for a lazy weekend afternoon matinee. Good for some chuckles without any need to be profound on any front. Nothing for the actors to be ashamed of being attached to either (sleep easy Ms. Keaton).