FlixChatter Review: We’re The Millers

WeretheMillersBnr

When I first saw this trailer, I’ve got to admit that I found the premise to be quite hilarious. Former SNL cast member Jason Sudekis plays a small-time pot dealer David, who has to assemble a fake family for a mission to transport a ‘smidgen’ of pot from Mexico. He’s convinced that under the disguise of a family on vacation, they wont run into scrutiny by the border crossing guards.

The first 20 minute or so sets up each of the ‘family’ member and how they ended up agreeing to do this crazy journey together. One of the movie’s highlights was when the ‘family’ first met on the plane on the way to California before they drive to Mexico. I think the situation itself lends to hilarity as they tried to conceal their identity. Though she has such a limited range, Jennifer Aniston is more watchable in comedies than rom-com. There’s a comical moment when she arrives on the plane looking like a demure suburban soccer mom, complete with sensible shoes, but then again she was not believable as a stripper to begin with.

Interesting that I first saw Sudekis in another Aniston movie The Bounty Hunter where he’s basically reduced to a pathetic admirer of her character. This time he’s got the leading role, though his character also pines for Aniston’s Rose, a stripper who’s desperate for cash after she gets evicted from her apartment. I think both Sudekis and Aniston have a natural chemistry together, though for me, the scene stealer is Will Poulter as Kenny, the virgin teen who lives in the same building as David and Rose. He kind of reminds me of Tintin, so maybe he’d be a good fit if they want to make a live action movie of the Belgian comics, ahah. Kenny is instantly likable and hilarious, the scene of him singing the Waterfall song by TLC is a hoot! I just realized that the 20-year-old actor is English who was in The Chronicles of Narnia, which totally floored me as he was so convincing as an awkward Midwestern kid. Emma Roberts is just ok as the Millers ‘daughter’, she’s the least memorable of the ensemble, I think a more comedic young actress would bring something more to the table.

WereTheMillersStills

To me the funniest moments are when the Millers get to Mexico in that giant RV, especially when they encounter a fellow RV-travelin’ tourist family after they managed to cross the border in Mexico. Nick Offerman and Kathryn Hahn play this squeaky clean, longtime husband and wife who are eager for some adventure to spark up their marriage. Offerman is one of my favorite comedians working today, the guy is naturally hysterical with his deadpan humor. I’d love to see him in a leading role for a change. French actor Tomer Sisley, whom I quite like in The Heir Apparent, was sadly wasted here, playing a stereotypical drug lord as the lame villain of the movie.

I’m usually not into raunchy R-rated comedies, I don’t know, endless profanities just don’t translate to entertainment for me. No doubt there are tons of that here, with vulgar scenes galore and some are quite offensive. The scene with Luis Guzmán as a Mexican cop asking for sexual favors in return of monetary bribe is just downright crude, but nothing could prepare me for the scene when Kenny’s um, testicles get bitten by a Tarantula! Aniston’s stripping scene doesn’t seem risqué by comparison, heck, it’s really nothing more than her showing off that she’s still got a hot bod at 44. One thing for sure, this is a comedy about family that’s definitely NOT for the whole family.

Overall, despite some hilarious moments, I feel like the premise has a lot more potential than what a team of four writers came up with here. I think under a more deft script and direction, this road trip movie could’ve been a comedy classic. At the same time, there’s enough going for it to keep me engaged throughout and some moments actually had me in stitches. So for that I’m going to be pretty generous in my rating. Comedies is tough genre to recommend as what people find funny vary so much, but I’d say this one is at least worth a rental.


3 out of 5 reels


Thoughts on this movie and/or the cast?

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43 thoughts on “FlixChatter Review: We’re The Millers

  1. Great review Ruth although I won’t be touching this one. I am so put off by raunch and excessive profanity. Yet that’s almost all we get today in terms of comedy.

    1. Totally understand Keith! If it weren’t for the free screening I probably wouldn’t even go see it. I think this is the only R-rated comedy I saw on the big screen all year, but yeah it seems that every comedy movies these days are so profane!

      1. I’m really anxious to hear your Elysium review. I know your dislike for blood and strong violence and it seems that it may be full of it. It’s one that I just can’t seem to get worked up for.

        1. I should have that up Sunday or Monday, Keith. It’s surprisingly not as gruesome as I thought, I think District 9 was more bloody as it’s got more of an gritty & organic feel to it. This one is more ‘Hollywood’ as it’s got a bigger budget and A-list cast. I was intrigued by the story so it was one of my most-anticipated movie actually 🙂

          1. I’ll ask you this because I always appreciate your thoughts. Is the class warfare preachiness as profound as I’ve heard? Damon certainly has an affection for these politically charged pictures.

            1. Ahah yeah, he certainly is quite vocal in his political belief, which I don’t necessarily subscribe to. But this film is more of Blomkamp’s vision though, inspired by growing up in Apartheid regime in South Africa. I try not to read too much into the preachiness, it’s really just a sci-fi flick.

      1. I did chuckle a few times during the trailer, so this is what I was wondering. In general, trailers nowadays seem to either show the whole movie or the very best scenes. I kept thinking, why isn’t Anna Faris in this? She is one of the funniest comedic actresses around. Thanks for the review Ruth.

        1. Hi Paula. Y’know, I think some of the best bits ARE in the trailer already. It’s a growing trend right now, seems that the art of making trailers have gotten lost. I’m not as familiar w/ Anna Faris but yeah, she’s probably a much better comedic actress than Aniston!

  2. Really great review, Ruth! I’ll admit that the trailers made me laugh, but I don’t imagine I’ll be watching this anytime soon. Just not my kind of comedy, really.

    1. It’s usually not my kind of comedy either William, so I was surprised that it did make me laugh. Not something I’d see again though.

  3. Yeah, comedies are tough to recommend. It seems as though I feel much the same about it, but I’d probably only give it 2 out of 5, maybe just because I’m getting fed up with mediocre comedies that all feel the same.

    1. Hi Ian! Yeah, that’s why I even hesitate to recommend this one other than perhaps a rental. It’s just sooo crude, I feel like taking a shower after watching it! Good thing I’ve skipped a bunch of comedies this year, so maybe that’s why I enjoyed it a bit more than I otherwise would.

  4. Nice review Ruth! Not sure I’ll be checking this out, not at the cinema anyway. Maybe when it comes on TV. I would be really interested to see Aniston in a more testing film just to see what she’s really made of for a change.

    1. Hi Chris, I think Aniston was all right here but then again i haven’t seen Horrible Bosses yet so i think her role is similar there, being raunchy i mean.

  5. Nice review Ruth. It was sucking real hard in the beginning, but suddenly got better and funnier as it went along. That’s what shocked me, but also allowed me to enjoy myself.

    1. Thanks Dan, yeah the first 20 min went on a bit too slow but as soon as the road trip started,it got funnier. But then the ending is too predictable though.

  6. Ted S.

    I don’t think it’s a movie I’d want to see and even though Jennifer is still looking great for her age, I just can’t buy her as a stripper. A while back I dated a “dancer” and she told me no one over 30s ever gets hired to be a stripper at clubs, but maybe in the movie her character is younger? Also, Jason Sudekis and Ed Helms looks so much alike, I always confuse which one is which. I assume Ed Helms’ role is pretty small in this movie?

    1. Ahah no she’s not belieavable at all as a stripper, she’ way too self conscious to actually BE sexy. I think in this movie she’s supposed to be in her 30s so still unrealistic. Helm’s role is quite small here n in his most memorable scene he was upstaged by an Orca, ahah.

  7. I didn’t even think you would give this one a chance. Personally, i don’t mind raunchy humor, so i don’t think that would bother me. I will probably rent this also

    Also, am i the only one who thinks Aniston is going from the good girl typecast to the fanservice/bad girl typecast. Like when she did it in Horrible Bosses, it was surpising and amusing. Now it just feels lazy to me. Personally i would much rather see her do something like The Good Girl,which i still think is her best performance so far

    1. I thought the trailer was hilarious but i wasnt aware of the red band version so i didnt know how crude it’d be. But if it doesnt bother u then i can see you enjoying this one Julian.

      You made a good point there about her playing a similar role as in Horrible Bosses tho it seemed like her character was even more crude in that one. I wonder if she’s even interested to do something like The Good Girl again.

    1. Are you a fan of Aniston and Sudekis? I think the supporting cast (Poulter and Offerman) are funnier than those two here, really surprised by Poulter’s performance!

  8. After reading the first few paragraphs of this post, I thought, “This movie sounds really awful … or awesome — I’m not sure which.” 🙂 It sounds like one that, as you said, is worth a rental, especially on a night I’m looking for something that won’t occupy too much space in my brain. Excellent review, Ruth!

    1. Hi Steph! Well I suppose the premise could go either way but it did make me laugh, though VERY crude in parts, but seems like I’m in the minority who don’t like excessive profanities in movies. I think for a rental it’s perfectly acceptable though.

  9. I’m probably gonna check it out on DVD, I like Aniston and Sudekis is really funny, damn, with him, Meyers and Hader gone from SNL this season the show will reach new low.

    1. Hi Sati! If you like both of those then I think you’d enjoy this one. You like Offerman too right, he’s just hilarious in this one. I don’t watch SNL much but when I do, I like Hader and Sudekis, I think those two should do a buddy movie together!

  10. The trailer did have me laughing to be honest but ultimately this is something that I will probably catch on cable, like I did with Horrible Bosses. And I totally agree Aniston is more straight comedy than rom-com for me.

    1. Hi Iba! I haven’t seen Horrible Bosses yet, seems that Aniston has found a niche in R-rated comedies. I have a feeling her character in HB is far raunchier though.

  11. Ooh! Look at you! two reviews for two of this past weekend’s new releases. woohoo. I am glad you got your reviews here. I couldn’t get to We’re the Millers over the weekend.

    haha, Kenny DOES look like Tintin.

    They filmed this just north of me and I have to see it because some of my friends are in it when they are on the plane. I will maintain my mediocre expectations. Great review, Ruth

    1. Ahah yeah, that rarely happens as I usually don’t have time to review ’em in the same week. Kenny looks so much like Tintin even from the trailer, but boy that kid is GOOD! Whaddayaknow, he’s a Brit 😉

      Oh then you have to see it just for that T. That’s gotta be fun to see your friends as extras in the film. So why didn’t you join them?

  12. Nice review Ruth.
    I definitely won’t be touching this one until it comes out for rental, and even then I might not give it a shot. It just looks like your run-of-the-mill raunchy comedy full of cliché, unfunny moments and not very compelling characters. To me it just looks like they packed the more memorable scenes (not to be confused with “best” scenes) in the trailer and that’s about it.

    1. Hi Niels! No need to bother w/ this one if it isn’t your thing, I mean I probably won’t see if it weren’t free. It does have some funny moments though, so I did enjoy it for the most part, but not a MUST-SEE by any means.

  13. Another one that feels like the best moments were in the trailer…and to be honest, they weren’t that good anyway. I still think Jennifer Aniston is far too one dimensional and do wonder how she gets paid so highly for these roles. Maybe one day we’ll see Aniston actually act rather than play a version of herself…

    …I’ll wait for it to arrive on TV.

    1. Y’know, the best bits ARE in the trailer. Aniston is a one-note actress but she seems to have found a niche w/ dark comedies these days. She had shown that she could act in The Good Girl but for some reason she’d rather keep playing a version of Rachel.

  14. Finally got around to seeing this and I thought it was really entertaining. Sure it could have been tightened up here and there (the whole drug lord bit felt underdeveloped) but had a great time watching it.

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