Ben Falcone

Warner Bros.

Tammy (Melissa McCarthy) is having a pretty bad day. Her car is totaled in a hit and run incident with a deer (the animal hit her then ran), she’s fired from her job at a fast food joint and she comes home early to find her husband is cheating on her with a neighbor. Even worse than catching them in bed together she walks in on them enjoying a lovely meal that he cooked — something he never did for Tammy — so she packs a bag and decides to hit the road. It’s a difficult decision to commit to when you don’t have a car, so she reluctantly takes her liquor-loving Grandma Pearl (Susan Sarandon) along for the ride in exchange for a vehicle and a wad of cash. The two head to Niagara Falls, but trouble hits almost immediately forcing Tammy to face her history of bad decisions head-on. Laws will be broken, crotches will be grabbed and things will explode. Tammy is not a great comedy. It’s not even a good one really, and if I had to toss an adjective its way to describe the quality of comedy on display I’d go with “okay.” That’s unfortunate for several reasons, not the least of which being that the film is a collaboration between McCarthy and her husband, Ben Falcone, who directed and co-wrote the film with her. The bigger disappointment though is seeing the unusual and appreciated elements of their script and lead character — and the promise of […]

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Melissa McCarthy

There’s something about Melissa McCarthy‘s next feature film that looks just a touch familiar. McCarthy will hit theaters later this summer with a starring role in Tammy, a comedy she also co-wrote alongside her husband Ben Falcone (who happens to be making his directorial debut with the film) that centers on the eponymous Tammy (uh, McCarthy), a perpetual loser who decides to take her life back by hitting the road with her surly grandmother (Susan Sarandon). Hijinks are all but assured, along with violence, misunderstandings, fun adventures, blood, and possibly getting to make out with Mark Duplass, who pops up as a potential love interest with a vast understanding of potato chip catchphrases (dreamy). The film may be an original McCarthy/Falcone joint, but it looks quite a bit like another wild trip comedy that McCarthy starred in just last year – Identity Thief. That film may have had some different aims for its particular road trip (like bringing McCarthy’s baddie thief to justice, and then also learning something along the way, aww), but there’s a shared DNA here that makes Tammy and Identity Thief sure feel like spiritual twins. It’s double feature material! With Jason Bateman and Sarandon kind of playing the same role! Yet, upon deeper reflection, it appears that McCarthy’s love for taking her act literally out on the road isn’t confined to just Tammy and Identify Thief, it goes far deeper than that. Here, take a look at the latest television spot for Tammy for a start, and we’ll go from there.

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trailer tammy

I’d be lying if I said I was excited at the prospect of a new comedy featuring Melissa McCarthy in a lead role. She’s far better in small doses where her very specific comedic style can hit and run before viewers can grow weary of the same old shtick involving attitude, crass behavior, and physical comedy derived from her large frame. This “character” is essentially what she plays again and again, with little deviation, and while it’s not nearly as insufferable as the ones recycled by the likes of Adam Sandler and Kevin James, it still doesn’t work at feature length. Then again, Identity Thief and The Heat were box-office hits and numbers one and two (respectively) on RedBox’s list of most rented titles in 2013, so what the hell do I know. McCarthy’s (sure to be) blockbuster comedy of 2014 has just gotten a first teaser trailer, and while it’s still early, this may end up being where I eat my words above. Tammy stars McCarthy as a woman having a terrifically bad day. She lost her job, found her husband cheating on her, and smashed her car, and she just wants out. Unfortunately, the only out she has is a road trip with a grandmother (Susan Sarandon) she just doesn’t like all that much. It also stars Dan Aykroyd, Kathy Bates, Mark Duplass, and Allison Janney. Check out the teaser below and see if you enjoy it as much as I did. I know, I’m surprised too.

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Nicolas Cage

What is Casting Couch? It’s your Monday look at all of the great work casting agents and PR people did over the weekend to keep those Hollywood gears turning. UPDATED: We dreamed too soon, kids. It seems like Sylvester Stallone is fully committed to his experiment of figuring out how many big name celebrities have to be packed into an Expendables movie before one of them actually becomes interesting. The latest news regarding his quest (found on Stallone’s Facebook page by JoBlo) is that Nicolas Cage has been confirmed for a role in The Expendables 3, and that Harrison Ford, Wesley Snipes, and Mickey Rourke are the names he intends on recruiting next. You keep on trucking there, Mr. Stallone. With the addition of just five or ten more celebrities, The Expendables 3 is bound to be the one that finally gets out of first gear and actually becomes a decent action movie. We have faith!

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Pregnancy and childbirth are nothing new. In fact, there are few things less new than humans reproducing. It’s been done before. But Kirk Jones’ What to Expect When You’re Expecting accurately captures the inherent selfishness of expecting parents,and their individual “journeys” to the delivery room (and beyond). Unfortunately, even when gifted with a large, mostly eager cast, Jones is also saddled with a script from Shauna Cross and Heather Hach (working off of Heidi Murkoff‘s guidebook of the same name) that is deeply uninterested in providing much variety in their work. The effect is simple one – the film itself is deeply uninteresting. While What to Expect continually reminds its viewers that pregnancy and childbirth are miracles, unique and thrilling gifts, Cross and Hach have concocted one of the most bland, basic, and unadventurous scripts in recent memory.

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