Low hanging fruit. So shortly after his wife’s funeral, a grandfather (Robert De Niro) enlists his soon-to-be-married grandson (Zach Efron) to take him on a road trip for some reason. Catch is that after being married for decades, the only thing he is looking to do is get laid, and he figures that the best way to make that happen is to attend a college spring break on a Florida beach. When I heard this title, I immediately placed this with the movies that have “Bad” in their titles, like Bad Santa and Bad Teacher. Given that Bad Grandpa was already claimed by Johnny Knoxville, they had to go a mildly different direction. Let me just come out and say that I would rather watch any of the aforementioned titles over this one.
And if you’ve seen Bad Teacher, you know that this is saying something.
It’s hard to get mad at Robert De Niro at this point in his career. He’s won Oscars, has firmly established himself as one of the greats, and has nothing left to prove to any one, so it makes sense that he wants to let loose and do something fun and raunchy. I’m okay with that on paper, but I really wish that it took place in a better movie. The main reason why Dirty Grandpa fails as much as it does is because it is so haphazardly put together. You can tell that there was no script to this, and you can see how they just made it up as they went. It’s a road trip movie, so they are just going from location to location, and it is constantly Zac Efron being a stick in the mud and then Robert De Niro coming back with something completely arbitrary with 1 – 3 swearwords input. Seriously, it’s just that on repeat for the entire time, and there isn’t an ounce of creativity to it.
It’s like the Family Guy dolphins from South Park.
With the exception of Zoey Deutch, everybody feels like they are playing a cartoon character. Zac Efron is supposed to be this lawyer, but because he does so many nonsensical asinine actions, you can never believe that he would have the smarts to succeed in law school. Because Dirty Grandpa it is so thinly written, you can predict the plot from quite a distance. For example, early on they hint at a nice montage of pictures to be projected in front of an entire wedding, I can’t possibly imagine something going wrong there… I chuckled a few times throughout, but that’s about the only positive thing I can say here, and everybody involved should be ashamed for taking part in this.
Dirty Grandpa (2016) *1/2
– Critic for Hire