Movie Review: ‘About My Father’ Is A Flawed And Infectious Comedy

Director: Laura Terruso

Writers: Austen Earl and Sebastian Maniscalco

stars: Robert De Niro, Leslie Bibb, Kim Cattrall

Synopsis: When Sebastian tells his old-school Italian immigrant father, Salvo, that he’s proposing to his American girlfriend, Salvo insists on spending a weekend with his Tony parents.

Even if you are a serious movie buff who considers cinema as an art form, you must be a fan of genre movies. From the digital effects drenched action-adventure flick to the sinister murder mystery thriller, movies are bound to entertain the masses. The same goes for the semi-autobiographical comedy that makes you laugh out loud, despite its flaws. That’s what you got with about my father, coming from the mind of one of the most popular comedians in the world, Sebastián Maniscalco. This is a comedy along the lines of meet the parents and Wedding Crashers which plays into the standard familiar dynamic tropes but turns out to be a lot of fun,

Directed by Laura Terruso, about my father it was written by Maniscalco and veteran CBS sitcom writer Austen Earl. The story follows Sebastian, a manager at a Hilton hotel who is dating Ellie, a charming artist played by Leslie Bibb. Ellie has a down-to-earth personality and a bright smile that lights up the room. They’re the classic “opposites attract” type of couple, with Ellie bringing a smile to Sebastian that he didn’t know she had. Ellie literally has to teach her how to practice and strengthen her facial muscles to smile more consistently.

The couple come from extraordinarily different backgrounds. Ellie’s family can trace their roots back to the real Mayflower. Her mother, Tigger (Kim Cattrall), and her father, Bill (David Rasche), are typical blue-blooded yuppies who lament that her father only gave her a hotel to start with after graduating from Harvard. Not to mention his brothers: Lucky (Anders Holms), a champagne socialist, and Doug (Brett Dier), a hippie trained in the art of singing bowls, complete an eccentric group.

On the other hand, Sebastian comes from a blue-collar family headed by his father, Salvo (Robert De Niro), a hairstylist who has been building women’s confidence and hair volume for decades. Knowing the value of a dollar, Salvo always kept his son from ordering appetizers or desserts from the menu. When Christmas came around, he would make Sebastián homemade toys, like a skateboard (and he comments that next year he will make him “one of those Nintendos”). Sebastian needs his grandmother’s ring from Salvo, which she plans to give to Ellie while she asks him to marry him. However, his father will only allow it once he meets Ellie’s family at her summer house on the 4th of July.

The comedy is inspired by Maniscalco’s father, an immigrant from Sicily and Army veteran who supported his family as a hairdresser in a working-class Chicago neighborhood. As a fan of Maniscalco for years, since the days of the 2008 documentary comedy tour. Vince Vaughn’s Wild West Comedy Show: 30 Days and 30 Nights – Hollywood to the Heartland, Not much has changed since then. The finely groomed, cologne-sprayed Italian-American comedian—with a penchant for class, style, and dry-cleaning every piece of clothing right down to his underpants—has the same cartoonish delivery that makes him a welcome juxtaposition onstage. , as he does in this movie.

about my father It stands out when Maniscalco speaks poetically about his life and remembers his upbringing with nostalgia. He’ll also enjoy how the comedian doesn’t openly agree with his father, but acknowledges the differences in lifestyles with these blue bloods that can’t be ignored. It’s no coincidence that those scenes, particularly when De Niro’s Sebastian and Salvo start making jokes at the expense of their soon-to-be in-laws in private, work because they’re straight out of Maniscalco’s “Can You Believe This?” standing act.

The cast has good chemistry, including the humorous relationship between De Niro and Maniscalco. This is their second movie together since the Irish, where, if you remember, the latter was shot in the head by the legendary actor. De Niro has always had a comedic gift in culture shock comedies, but he never plays against type for a reason. While most of the characters outside of the leads are cardboard cutouts from genre comedies, Cattrall stands out more here as a fire-breathing conservative politician. While some scenes are often wacky (like Sebastian losing his shorts on a Flyboard) and others can lead to eye-rolls (like Salvo using a family pet for dinner), the scenes are still fun, if a bit too long and over-the-top. sometimes. . The scenes where Sebastian is openly rude to his father are purely manipulative to play on the themes of the comedian realizing what family means to him.

Still you don’t go in about my father waiting for a reinvention of the genre with its lightning-fast runtime. It’s a culture shock farce that works thanks to Maniscalco’s brand of comedy and De Niro playing to his long-established comedic strengths as a cynical curmudgeon set in his ways. This highly enjoyable film has an infectious sense of humor and delivers a handful of laughs that will put a smile on your face, even as you accept its imperfections.

Grade: B+