American comedy movies haven’t been good lately. Bold statement, but I feel they have been catching cheap laughs, dragging characters through unfunny and ridiculous situations to capture people’s attention. Vacation for example, placing itself well for worst movie of 2015, created cringe worthy and awkward situations that really didn’t pay off. I went to the cinema to watch Daddy’s Home thinking that this might be a different type of comedy film, this might have some potential. With Will Ferrell, one of the biggest American comedy names out there, and Mark Wahlberg, an incredible actor, surely this movie cannot be that bad…
In Daddy’s Home, we see Will Ferrell as Brad Whitaker, a step-dad who has always wanted to have kids of his own and be called “Dad”, a really likable Mr Nice-Guy. He’s reliant on his “How to be a Dad” book to guide him and does everything he can to help and support the two children and his wife, Sara, played by Linda Cardellini. Everything is going well until Dusty turns up out of the blue.
Dusty, played by Mark Wahlberg, is this really annoying cool guy and the biological father of the two children. Whatever he does is successful, but his attitude towards the situation does not make him deserving of the success. His actions spur on Brad’s jealously and anger, which often causes Brad to do really stupid things. When Brad wants to put his foot down, Dusty manipulates him to do things that are completely against his original intentions.
The idea of this story is interesting, but the way the story was told was, for me, only okay-ish. Brad and Dusty have this chemistry that towards the end of the movie really comes together nicely, but my main bugbear is that this is a comedy movie that wasn’t that funny. Will Ferrell has a talent for playing quirky and comedic characters, like out of Anchorman, but Brad is a very straight and ordinary character, which doesn’t come across well for me. Most of Brad’s “humour” is triggered by cringe worthy and awkward events which aren’t funny, just cringe worthy and awkward. Dusty’s “humour” is pretty much non-existent. Most of the time Mark Wahlberg’s character is being an idiot and is, honestly, not actually being funny at all.
The funniest parts of this movie come from the children, Dylan and Megan. A lot of what they say and their reactions spur on the majority of the comedy from this movie. Hannibal Buress’ character, Griff, is also very funny, the comments he makes and his reactions are moments of hilarity.
Daddy’s Home is an okay movie in general, but often lacked the humour element I wanted to see. Where I saw the humour, it was generated by the wrong characters. It may be that most of the jokes were tailored for an American audience, so didn’t make sense to me. Although I didn’t think it was incredible movie, Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg played their characters well, the characters may not have suited them, but they played them well.