By Jess Lomas
August 13, 2013
(Republished December 16, 2013)
Part bumbling crime caper and part road movie shenanigans, We’re the Millers utilises a strong cast and a handful of gag jokes to come out as one of the more enjoyable comedies of the year.
Small time drug dealer David Clark (Jason Sudeikis) is robbed of his stash and cash when naive neighbour Kenny (Will Poulter) alerts a group of thugs to his occupation. Owing his supplier Brad (Ed Helms) more money than he can repay, he’s given the opportunity to earn it back by bringing a “smidge” of marijuana over the border from Mexico. A smidge turns out to be a motor home’s worth; enough to land David 25 years in a Mexican prison if he's caught. David devises what he believes to be a foolproof plan: get stripper Rose (Jennifer Aniston) to pose as his wife, and bring Kenny and runaway teen Casey (Emma Roberts) along as their children. Who would suspect an all-American family in a RV of being international drug smugglers?
Along the way they begrudgingly befriend fellow motor home drivers the Fitzgerald family; Don (Nick Offerman), who just happens to work for the DEA, his wife Edie (Kathryn Hahn), and their teenage daughter Melissa (Molly Quinn). It’s unfortunate when supporting actors upstage the main cast, but it has to be said Offerman and Hahn alone make this film worth seeing, with their performances eliciting the most laughs.
Beyond the drugs storyline, the picture takes particular aim at the man-child generation; those who have refused to “settle down” with a wife and kids, but who deep down really want to, of course. It’s the sentimental and extremely sappy side of this story that you know is coming, as each of these misfits find something they were longing for in this fake family.
Director Rawson Marshall Thurber has been fairly quiet since releasing Dodgeball back in 2004; now in We’re the Millers he delivers a dose of sexualised comedy in the vein of Horrible Bosses, and gross-out humour similar to There’s Something About Mary. There are few surprises to be had, though the faux-family dynamic offers plenty of awkward situations that lead to hilarious outcomes.
We’re the Millers has a predictable plot, some jokes may fall flat, and Aniston’s stripping scenes come off as gratuitous. Yet, there’s enough here to enjoy in a year with few stand out comedies.
We're the Millers will be available on Quickflix from December 18, 2013.