A ‘Glee’ alum teaming up with gangster movie god Robert De Niro? That’s all we need to hear to sign up to see ‘The Family,’ but are the critics on board as well?
Have you ever wondered what it’d be like if Goodfellas and Meet The Parents melded into one movie? Well, now you don’t have to! The Family (in theaters Sept. 13), starring Robert De Niro, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Dianna Agron, dives deep into a story about a mob family that turns on the toughness after their enemies discover their witness protection hiding spot. We’d watch De Niro and Quinn from Glee being badass gangsters any day, but let’s see how the critics feel about the flick.
‘The Family’ Reviews
The movie has holes galore. It has abrupt tonal shifts, an incoherent back story and abandoned subplots. It doesn’t even try for basic credibility. But buoyed by hot performances, it sustains a zapping electrical energy.
While De Niro and Pfeiffer make their way through the story’s paces well enough, it’s actually Glee’s Agron who makes a surprising impression, sliding from the innocent ingénue to manipulative murderess with ease.
Throughout, [director Luc] Besson serves up red meat action with the sweet feel of a confectionary, making his fun, forgettable The Family both better than might be expected and still not much of anything at all.
Agron (of Glee) is like a Britney who can act. She, Pfeiffer, and D’Leo hit authentic and moving notes during the final siege — enough to make you think that without Besson’s facetious tone, The Familymight have been a hell of a thriller. But Besson — by no means a bad filmmaker — has gotten rich off that kind of violence that upsets no one, least of all jaded international action audiences. He tries to have it both ways and fails some of cinema’s most precious resources.
The R-rated violence—heads bashed, throats slit, blood everywhere—doesn’t exactly put a grin on your face. The actors, especially Pfeiffer, give the script more than it deserves. But Besson’s leaden touch works against light and airy. The Family is a comic soufflé that never rises.
It sounds like The Family is on the verge of being really good, right? At least it’s safe to say you won’t be wasting your money by seeing this entertaining — possibly oddball — movie. And we’re definitely happy to hear that Dianna is now making a name for herself on the big screen.
So what do you think, HollywoodLifers? Will you go see The Family? Let us know!
WATCH: ‘The Family’ Trailer
— Andrew Gruttadaro
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