The very first thing that irritated me about this film was the appalling gag used throughout the film. The man is named Greg (Gaylord) Focker. Although his surname sounds vaguely like a swearword, this is a very thin gag which is the basis of huge chunks of the film. This is the first cruel part of this film.
The film is focused towards victimising the main character. Instead of making gags about the mistakes he makes inadvertently, he is forced to make these mistakes. It is so rigid. It seems that all acting and storylines are suspended until the next mistake happens and then the next five minutes is verbal abuse at what best can be described as accidents.
It seems that the entire family, including his girlfriend are hoping and praying for him to make a mistake so that they can get rid of him. He tries to impress and help the family. They make no attempt to apologise when they are at fault.
Many other reviews focus on the fact that you can identify with the main character, this enables you to laugh at this film. This is the entire problem with this film. The fact that you can identify with the character makes this film even harder to watch. If Ben Stiller hadn't done such a great job at portraying this character then maybe I could stand to laugh. His performance was too good. I put myself in his shoes once too often during this film and was disgusted with the way he is treated.
The character is too nice to laugh at. He is true to himself. (His job choice) He cares about other's beliefs. (Asking her father for permission) He is desperate to please and earn the respect and acceptance of his 'new' family.
The rest of the cast is exposed to be cruel and nasty at various points in the film. How can people dare to laugh at the nicest and most honest character in this film.
Ben Stiller - 8/10 (For his portrayal)
Everything else - 0/10
17 out of 30 found this helpful