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    Meet The Parents [20]

    Movie Reviews
    In Meet The Parents, Gaylord ‘Greg’ Focker (Ben Stiller) goes to meet his fiancé’s (Pam played by Teri Polo) parents (Jack and Dina Byrnes, played by Robert De Niro and Blythe Danner) for the first time. Jack turns out to be an Ex-CIA operative with all the paranoia and foibles of a daughter’s father thrown in. Greg seems to be a likeable guy saddled with a lot of tough baggage to carry. He is a male nurse, his name is the butt of jokes, and he is neither rich, successful, great looking, nor athletic. Yet he loves Pam, and Pam loves him.

    It is every potential son in law’s nightmare to try and please a future father in law. And every father of a daughter tries to protect his baby from the creeps out there. So this unbearable tension is ripe for comedy relief. I really felt for Greg. He gets no respect and everyone wishes he would just go away. He perseveres, much to his credit, but also due to the love shown to him by Pam.

    There are some classic scenes, like when Jack grills Greg using a polygraph. Pam’s ex, an athletic, good looking, successful, rich Kevin Rawley (played by Owen Wilson) hosts a party at his huge mansion. The volleyball match in the indoor pool is the classic nerd nightmare and has some great gags. You can just hear Greg’s self esteem shriveling up as Kevin brags about his sexual exploits with Pam.

    Greg’s success and failure comes from the fact that he seems to have little or no ego, so nothing really seems to get him down. But he does have extraordinarily bad luck. He accidentally torches the hand carved wedding arch, he floods the backyard with raw sewage, and he breaks the nose of Pam’s sister right before her wedding day.

    There are lots of great comedy moments and sight gags. Ben Stiller plays this type of character very well. I could best describe him as a “marginally successful guy despite some marginally bad breaks”. This is his character in There's Something About Mary as well.

    There is no doubt that room was made for a sequel with this line from Jack: “I guess the only thing to do now is meet his parents. I'm sure they're decent people. I mean they gotta be if they named their son Gaylord Focker.” Excellent Rental. {BB}

    Added: December 17th 2004
    Reviewer: BB
    29 Point Scale Score: 20    [20]

    Related Link (IMDB): IMDB
    Hits: 1453
    Language: english


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