News from the Locarno Festival

The Family’s Grass is Always Greener on the Other (Mexican) Side

The Family’s Grass is Always Greener on the Other (Mexican) Side



The family snapshot brings together a marijuana dealer, a cynical stripper, a savvy and tattooed teenager and an over-excitable virgin.

Meet the Millers, the twisted and somewhat borderline clutch of individuals forced by an emergency to gather under the improbable umbrella of the picture-postcard institution of the typical stars-and-stripes family. And this is where the group-photo smile becomes unrestrained laughter, thanks to the irreverent bite of the new film by Rawson Marshall Thurber, already known—to those who love the funfair rides of absurd comedies—for Dodgeball, with Ben Stiller, almost ten years ago. Back then, the target was the obtuse world of gyms, slimming cures and off-limits competitions, while here, in We’re the Millers, the comic meat-grinder is packed with the traditional shell of the nuclear family, which is deconstructed and shaken up in the most improbable and fictitious way, under the roof of a shiny RV, during the most classcially American weekend of the year, the Fourth of July.

Mexican narco traficker, customs, on the road breakdowns, camping with amusements parks and couple swinging: clichés and their reversals are packed into the comic fuse which, once lit, explodes into a script burning with low blows, sharp digs, not-so-ritual courtship techniques and embarrassing circumstances.

The star duo placed within this ebullient framework brings a character actress of the caliber of Jennifer Aniston alongside Jason Sudeikis, here in the guise of scene-stealer, able to give his character the outward appearance of propriety without stopping the most caustic sarcasm from seeping out.

Lorenzo Buccella

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