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Laramie Movie Scope:
Meet the Fockers

Mildly amusing comic sequel

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by Robert Roten, Film Critic
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March 30, 2005 -- “Meet the Fockers” is a mildly entertaining sequel to the hit “Meet the Parents” with the same director and cast. This time the engaged couple, Greg Focker (played by Ben Stiller) and Pam Byrnes (Teri Polo) and her parents, Jack (Robert De Niro) and Dina (Blythe Danner of “Sylvia”) are going to Florida to meet Greg's parents, Bernie (Dustin Hoffman) and Roz (Barbra Streisand of “The Prince of Tides”).

While Jack is an uptight, repressed conservative, Bernie and Roz are the opposite, unconventional, emotionally open liberals. These opposites don't attract. When forced to be together for several days, all sorts of conflicts emerge. Jack's suspicious nature and CIA contacts resurface. Bernie gets tired of Jack's put-downs of his family and gets even in a football game. Greg tries in vain to keep his wild parents under control, but they are irrepressable, of course. Slowly, the situation slides into chaos. Much of the comedy in the film rests heavily on unimaginative splapstick comedy scenes.

As sequels go, this one, like most, is inferior to the original, but it is hard not to like these characters. The film may be lacking in plot and dialogue, but it is long on capable actors, who create funny characters. De Niro, Hoffman, Streisand (an underrated comic actress), Danner and Stiller all easily inhabit their characters. Hoffman and Streisand, especially are loveable offbeat characters. Unlike the uptight, judgemental Jack Byrnes, the Fockers make you feel right at home. Most characters in movie comedies are so strange you wouldn't actually want to spend any time with them. The Fockers are different. They won me over, even if the movie did not. This film rates a C.

Click here for links to places to buy or rent this movie in video and/or DVD format, or to buy the soundtrack, posters, books, even used videos, games, electronics and lots of other stuff. I suggest you shop at least two of these places before buying anything. Prices seem to vary continuously. For more information on this film, click on this link to The Internet Movie Database. Type in the name of the movie in the search box and press enter. You will be able to find background information on the film, the actors, and links to much more information.

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Copyright © 2005 Robert Roten. All rights reserved.
Reproduced with the permission of the copyright holder.
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Robert Roten can be reached via e-mail at my last name at lariat dot org. [Mailer button: image of letter and envelope]

(If you e-mail me with a question about this or any other movie or review, please mention the name of the movie you are asking the question about, otherwise I may have no way of knowing which film you are referring to)