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It’s bluntly cheeky, it goes on for too long, but the concept keeps on giving.
The film is surprisingly amiable, thanks to the commitment of its lead actors and its refusal to condescend to its characters.
The hit rate gets better as the film lumbers along and the scenarios grow more extreme, but it takes a certain degree of perseverance to roll with this thing until it pays off.
Lacking real zest or fun, it’s a middling effort, if one with ample heart and good intentions, that happens to star two actors who can rise to the occasion when necessary. Working together, it’s a shame that they serve both as this frustratingly mediocre comedy’s most reliable pleasure and most consistent disappointment.
The Hollywood Reporter
Almost nothing anyone does registers as recognizably human; it’s all just a pretext for yet another round of envelope-pushing outrageousness.
We Got This Covered
Why Him? plays a fairly one-note game that gets tiresome halfway through, which is sadly still better than most comedies put out this year.
The A.V. Club
Hamburg springs some surprises, albeit secondhand ones. More often, he calls his shots from a mile away.
There might have been a thorny dark comedy in this chauvinistic pissing contest. But in trying to get us to like both opponents, the film undercuts most of its sharpest comic potential, leaving us instead with musty jokes.
It’s fair if not entirely accurate to say everything funny it you can see in the trailers and TV ads for Why Him? Because those samples aren’t the least big amusing, and there is a random laugh or three in this holiday comedy to put the “R” back in Christmas.
Why Him? is the kind of movie that makes trendy sophistication and homespun values look equally unattractive; the only remaining alternative is anarchy, an ingredient that’s sadly lacking in this bland, formulaic comedy.
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