Let me get this out of the way. “Dirty Grandpa” now has some serious competition from “The Boss” for the single most painfully unfunny comedy so far this year.
It’s a massive clunker that feels tired and desperate in scene after scene with paper-thin material.
Melissa McCarthy stars as Michelle Darnell, a wealthy CEO and the 47th richest person in America who gets arrested for insider trading and goes to prison for four months. After her release, she discovers that her fortune is gone and she’s left with only her personal belongings.
She’s taken in by one of her former employees, Claire (Kristen Bell) and her daughter.
Darnell quickly tries to conjure up a plan that will make her rich again and she seizes that opportunity by helping Claire’s daughter with her Girl Scout cookies. She devises a strategy to make the girls turn a profit.
This, of course, just provides a set up to show McCarthy pulling dumb stunts, including one scene involving a catfight of sorts between her unit and a rival one.
All the while, Darnell is trying to figure out who set her up in the first place. She eventually finds that it’s her former lover turned business enemy (Peter Dinklage). The two square off in some moments that leave us bewildered and befuddled as to how these two fell in love in the first place.
McCarthy has the gift of explosive comedic talent, but even with a script co-written by her, the movie resorts to desperation at every angle in order to achieve a laugh and the results are cringe-worthy. In fact, none of the actors seem to be really inhabiting this movie. They seem to project the error of wishing that they were in another movie.
If this movie were my employee, it would be fired on the spot. We can only hope McCarthy will redeem herself this summer with the revamped “Ghostbusters” reboot. Until then, back to square one, Mrs. McCarthy.
(Rated R for sexual content, language and brief drug use.)
Hall is a syndicated columnist in South Georgia.