Meet the Fockers (2004)

PG-13   |    |  Comedy, Romance


Meet the Fockers (2004) Poster

All hell breaks loose when the Byrnes family meets the Focker family for the first time.

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6.3/10
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  • Robert De Niro and Jay Roach in Meet the Fockers (2004)
  • Jay Roach in Meet the Fockers (2004)
  • Robert De Niro in Meet the Fockers (2004)
  • Arielle Kebbel at an event for Meet the Fockers (2004)
  • Alanna Ubach at an event for Meet the Fockers (2004)
  • Arielle Kebbel at an event for Meet the Fockers (2004)

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11 March 2008 | bob the moo
An extension of the original film done bigger but to lesser effect
Firmly part of the circle of trust, Greg Focker is planning his marriage to Dina and has put off a big family get together for as long as he can. With no further excuses, Greg and Dina join Pam and Jack as they take their RV down to Florida to meet the Focker family. With an eye very much on his bloodline, Jack is keen to judge his future son-in-law by his parents, which spells problems when he finds himself living with two very liberal and touchy-feely Fockers.

I'm in my thirties now and it probably is not very impressive that I can put words together in a basic sentence. Whereas for a two year old it might be a real surprise if they were to discuss their opinions on political matters as such with you. What is the difference? Well it is simply one of expectation. Coming to the subject of films, expectation can often make or break a film, with perhaps a poor Pauly Shore movie being better received by viewers than a poor Spielberg film partly because you expect that standard from the former but more from the latter. So it does help this film that with the very title you are informed that you are not about to witness the sharpest of comedies.

With this in mind I went in with a forgiving eye, just hoping for laughs but I was not really prepared for how most of the film is unimaginative and base. In the first film we had Greg contrast with stern father Jack and hilarity ensues; here we have the same setup again but this time Greg is replaced as a device by his parents. What this means is that the film essentially aims at the same low targets as the first film and mostly hits them. To avoiding being too boorish on this subject I will admit that moments are funny and that the casting was a nice try but mostly I just found it obvious and dull. Toilet humour, a retread of the CIA stuff and so on supposedly provide the comedy while the drama is the same superficial relationship stuff as before.

The cast mostly do their best to try and lift it. Stiller mugs along well enough but the real fun (such as it is) comes from De Niro and Hoffman. The former more or less just does his stuff again but is enjoyable enough, while the latter is at least having fun with a silly character. Streisand and Polo have lesser roles but still have a bit of fun, while poor Danner is just a plot device to try and the give the film some sort of centre. Cameos from Wilson and Nelson don't add much to proceedings and don't even get me starting on the annoying Pickren twins who are not only irritating but made more irritating by the way the film overuses them, apparently in the belief that "Little Jack" is funny and/or cute when really he is neither. Roach's direction is nothing short of pedestrian – even the choice of theme music is obvious and easy.

Overall then this is a film that people who really liked the first film will enjoy. Those that just "liked" it may find that they didn't like it enough to watch it twice, which is what is happening here. The cast play it up as much as they can but really this is just an extension of the original idea done bigger but to lesser effect.

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The actors and actress portraying Greg Focker's parents and in-laws have won a combined six Academy Awards. Dustin Hoffman (Bernie Focker) won two Oscars for Best Actor for Kramer vs. Kramer (1979) and Rain Man (1988). Barbra Streisand (Roz Focker) won one Oscar for Best Actress for Funny Girl (1968) and one Oscar for Best Original Song for "Evergreen", from the film A Star Is Born (1976). Robert De Niro won an Oscar for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for The Godfather: Part II (1974) and another Oscar for Best Actor for Raging Bull (1980).


Quotes

Gunther - Immigrant Man: You must do something! Baby's coming!
Greg Focker: Yes, I know baby's coming. Miss, you have to stay calm and take deep breaths, okay?
Greg Focker: Myra! I need a doctor here right now!
Admitting Nurse: I'm working on it!
Venka - Immigrant Woman: You're not doctor?
Greg Focker: No, I'm a nurse.
Gunther - Immigrant Man: You're a man and you're a nurse?
Venka - Immigrant Woman: ...


Goofs

When Dina has the scrapbook during dinner, she is seen holding the book open to the circumcision page and then flipping through the following pages but in the next shot the book is open back to the circumcision page.


Crazy Credits

During the credits, Jack is seen watching the tapings of his secret camera, this was also done in the first movie when he watched Greg, this time he sees all of the Fockers in the camera. Also, this time, Greg realizes he's on-camera, and he has some fun at Jack's expense before revealing he's onto the surveillance.


Alternate Versions

US DVD release features an extended edition which incorporates the deleted scenes (from the special features) into the theatrical cut and runs 124 minutes.


Soundtracks

If I Were a Carpenter
Written by
Tim Hardin
Performed by Tim Hardin
Courtesy of Universal Records
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises

Storyline

Plot Summary


Synopsis (WARNING: Spoilers)


Genres

Comedy | Romance

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