Our score: 3 out of 5 stars
What else can happen to Tammy (McCarthy). Fired from her Mc-job after a deer runs into her car, she returns home early to find her husband having dinner. With the woman next door. Humiliated, she goes to her mother’s house looking for solace. Instead she finds her grandmother (Sarandon, never better) with a purse full of cash and a dream to visit Niagara Falls. What follows is one of the most outrageous road films of all time.
Co-written by star McCarthy with her director (and real life husband) Falcone, “Tammy” is a dramadey that actually works best during its most serious moments. The reason for this is that supplying the laughs seems to have been left up to only McCarthy, whose improvisational skills can only stretch so far. Long stretches of her trying to fill a scene with laughs sometime weigh the tone of the film down. Don’t get me wrong, I think she is a brilliant comedienne and a fine actress, but she could have used a little more help in some of the scenes. Fortunately, for most of the film, she is surrounded by great actresses including Oscar-winner Sarandon, Kathy Bates (herself an Oscar-winner), Sandra Oh, Alison Janey and, on the men’s side, Duplass, Gary Cole and, in a quick appearance, Dan Aykroyd. These co-stars take some of the emotional weight off of McCarthy’s shoulders and it’s in these scenes that “Tammy” (and Tammy herself) comes alive.
Falcone proves himself well behind the camera. He does hit a few stalls in the road but mostly keeps the film moving smoothly. I’d like to see what he could do with a project where he doesn’t just rely on McCarthy’s abilities to be funny in order to fill a scene. As his next scheduled film behind the camera is also co-written by and starring McCarthy. I may need to wait awhile to get my wish.
While not as funny as I thought it could be, “Tammy” is still an entertaining way to help celebrate the 4th of July (see the movie and you’ll know what I mean)!