Back to School or Back to the Drawing Board?
Mention Melissa McCarthy to people and you either get “oh she’s hilarious” or “god she is so unfunny!” and unfortunately I have lately been in the latter camp. After a big success with Bridesmaids, I have just found almost everything she has turned her hand to to be poorly executed…and I feared for Life Of The Party too. The trailer turned up a few laughs but it was clear it wasn’t going to be constant throughout.
So as the film started and really struggled to get going, I thought we were going down a painful road of unfunny comedy, squeezed into the age old trope of “older person goes to do something that younger people do” as seen in many of it’s predecessors.
It does, however, pick up. There are some genuine laugh out loud moments that had me really belting out some belly laughs. The unfortunate thing is that two or three REALLY funny scenes, a comedy film it makes not! Most of the attempts at comedy between these good points is truly painful. I actually found any scene with Bridesmaids co-star Maya Rudolph in them to be a lot funnier than anything else in the film. She really brings the chuckles to the film and keeps them there.
There’s some silly subplots about a girl who had been in a coma for 8 years, and the strange roommate, but any jokes directed at these very rarely pay off, and the ultimate coming together of both those storylines feels a little abject and shoehorned in there for a glamour moment.
It’s not terrible, but it’s absolutely miles off being the funniest film of the year.