Tammy | Screen | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper


Melissa McCarthy's on-the-road comedy takes too many wrong turns

Men, and particularly the man-child, dominate current comedies, so I guess it's a form of parity that we've now got a woman headlining a similar slapsticky, vulgar-with-a-soft-center yuk-fest. I long for both sexes to rise above, and to see talented folks of both genders deliver smarter comedies, but it's especially disappointing to see Melissa McCarthy squander her capital and talents on yet another road-trip-gone-wrong. And we gotta blame her, since she and her husband, Ben Falcone, co-wrote it, and Falcone directs.

In this shaggy-dogger, Tammy (McCarthy) hits the road with her granny (Susan Sarandon) for a predictable set of booze-and-idiocy-created mishaps. (Side note: We now know the limits of Saradon's acting skills because she's a very unconvincing failing senior.) Along the way, Tammy meets a potential new love interest (Mark Duplass, set on low) as well as a straight-talking lesbian (Kathy Bates).

Tammy can't find a focus between laughing at, laughing with and not laughing at all. Is grandma a fun hard-partier, or a troubled alcoholic? Is Tammy a dim-bulb rube, or not? How can you hire such great comic actresses as Allison Janney and Toni Collette, and give them nothing to do?! Mysteries that will not answered on this megaplex visit.

Women & Non-binary Bike Summit
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Women & Non-binary Bike Summit

By Mars Johnson