I’m not going to brush around the facts here. Let’s just get straight to the point, Melissa McCarthy has often had to carry her comedy films. Some of them may follow a good story and have a string of popular supporting characters, but at the end of the day she is completely the heart and soul of both Bridesmaids and The Heat.
In this one however, not even her usual clumsy antics can save Tammy from falling very short indeed. Ironically this could have one of the finest supporting casts of any of her previous films, but it still isn’t enough. Starting with the plot, after Tammy is fired from her job and finds her husband cheating on her she decides to hit the road and as you can expect various incidents follow. These comedy sequences have lost a lot of originality by now though. There are a few laughs throughout but many of them come from the fact that it reminds us of similar yet funnier scenes in her previous films.
Also the main characters lack any sympathy or emotional attachment at all. This may sound like a humorous version of Thelma and Louise, but instead it just feels like a series of random events that are emotionally and comically empty. This time it relies far too much on McCarthy’s performance to be comedic. But her character just isn’t up to scratch, and we don’t care about any of the twists and turns in the film because there’s no tension in them, nor is there any connection with even the main character. This could be the problem with making McCarthy’s character the central one, in Bridesmaids and The Heat she was important to the plot, but not the most important. Whilst she may have been a fan favourite and the most comedic, she allowed other characters to take the emotional weight and then you could have a successful story.
The problem is that they don’t try to stray towards any particular brand of comedy either. Is it sentimental, is it gross-out, or is it just random? It tries to be all of them and fails rather pitifully. The direction is slightly off as well, a good enough director could have salvaged something from this poor script. I feel rather guilty for criticising this as well because it’s McCarthy’s husband Ben Falcone, so now I’m just criticising their entire family, sorry. But I have to say it, a good script and sensible directing are sorely missed and obviously absent.
There are some plus points about this film. As I said before there is an impressive supporting cast and most of them give some good performances. However Susan Sarandon looks very out of place as a senior citizen. Once again McCarthy gives the same up to shape performance that we have come to expect from previous outings.
But as I also said before, none of this can make up for how little emotional depth and comedy this film contains. As well as this, even at 97 minutes it feels overly-long, the short paced comedy falls flat fairly quickly and for the last half an hour we’re left with this weak story and wishing that the credits start rolling. In summary it misses nearly every target and falls short of so many others.