We’re the Millers is director Rawson Marshall Thurber‘s latest R-rated raunchy comedy, starring Jennifer Aniston and Jason Sudeikis. The film’s simple premise promises tons of front-loaded laughs, but nothing to remember it by, leaving no lasting impression or no real high spots, aside from some decent chemistry between the film’s “fake” family and enough quick one-liners from the typically-annoying Ed Helms to make it not be considered the worst comedy of the summer. We’re the Millers is raunchy, crude and sometimes completely moronic, but it’s also harmless.
David (Jason Sudeikis) is a middle-aged pot dealer with no family or real friends. The closest friend he has is fellow apartment tenant Kenny (Will Poulter), but even that’s a stretch. He shares a building with a stripper named Rose (Jennifer Aniston) and there’s also a homeless young lady named Casey (Emma Roberts) that can occasionally be seen chatting on her iPhone outside the building.
All four people have nothing in common and mostly hate each other, aside from Kenny, but yet they are all drawn together by David once he loses a lot of weed and realizes that the only way to settle his score with the big time drug runner (played with enough over-the-top cheese by Ed Helms) is to smuggle a massive amount of drugs over the Mexican/US border in exchange for a sizable amount of cash and a clean slate.
David comes up with a brilliant idea to create a fake family to help ease the suspicion and the result is far from a wild and crazy ride and instead something a little more tame and predictable, if not completely disappointing during brief moments.
Rawson Marshall Thurber‘s We’re the Millers is an uneven comedy that comes jam-packed and front-loaded with enough R-rated humor to keep you laughing for the entire opening twenty minutes. Seriously, the film is an entertaining riot almost immediately out of the gate, but then the story sets in and Jason Sudeikis and the rest of the cast are forced to follow the ridiculous plot and the rest of the film quickly loses its steam.
The only real things keeping the film together are Ed Helms‘ obnoxious, yet always funny turn as the film’s dickhead drug cartel and the building chemistry that is formed between Sudeikis and the rest of the members of his “family”. Aside from those things, We’re the Millers is completely hollow and empty of any material that one would describe as good or clever.
The jokes are mostly of the simple-minded nature, focusing on sex and crude language simply for the sake of “earning” its R. Again, the film starts out with enough momentum to almost fool the viewer into thinking that they’re watching a high quality R-rated flick, but then quickly the film nosedives into a slow death of flat jokes. There’s no real message to take away from a film like this, aside from maybe not being a complete asshole to everyone around you.
Rawson Marshall Thurber‘s direction is lopsided and unfocused, moving way too quickly across the film’s plot points that we’re shown as key elements in the trailer, but then later revealed as nothing but minor speed bumps along this long and never ending road of flat-lining comedy that even comedic favorite Nick Offerman fails to save.
Jason Sudeikis fails to carry the film as the leading funny man. Usually Sudeikis excels as the typical asshole with a hidden heart, but here he’s all talk and no real action. This doesn’t make him the worst thing on screen, but he’s rarely utilized to his full potential. Either Sudeikis took this one as a fast paycheck or the material just wasn’t up to standards to make for a truly engaging character.
Jennifer Aniston tries yet again in the R-rated comedy genre with a role that’s much tamer than her turn in Horrible Bosses. We’re the Millers features typical Aniston-like humor, with an occasional F-bomb for good measures. She, much like Sudeikis, seems rarely interested in the material and the result is another sleeper performance that comes across just as bored and uninterested as those around her.
We’re the Millers wouldn’t have been such a disappointment had it not lost all of its steam before the halfway point. Director Rawson Marshall Thurber unwisely squeezes all of the good stuff into the front of the film and leaves nothing but leftovers for everyone to fight over from that point. Sudeikis and Aniston clearly have no care in the world for their characters or the film as a whole, leaving the rest of the cast in a confused state of disappointment.
Ed Helms really is the only winner in the entire film and that’s not really a good thing considering that he’s only in the film for maybe ten or fifteen minutes.
We’re the Millers is exactly the type of R-rated comedy studios would shove out towards the end of the summer, because it features a thin plot that makes way for a few chuckles and not much of anything else. General audiences won’t hate this one, but those looking for something genuinely funny might want to hold off and check this one out at a later date. It’s not the worst comedy of the summer, but it’s also not that good either.
We’re the Millers – 6.5/10