Directed by: Paul Weitz
Written by: John Hamburg & Larry Stuckey (screenplay)
Starring: Ben Stiller, Robert DeNiro, Jessica Alba, and Owen Wilson
It has always been about fear for the Focker franchise. The fear Greg (Ben Stiller) has of his father-in-law/ex-CIA agent Jack (Robert DeNiro) and vice versa. For two films, thanks to a handful of other comic aids, that unlikely comic duo has become weirdly iconic. Like The Godfather franchise, which this movie apparently thinks it’s worthy of spoofing since it stars DeNiro, it’s time for the unnecessary third installment.
In yet another uncomfortable moment between Jack and Greg, this time at some snooty prep school that Greg is trying to get his kids in, Jack talks about being a shepherd taking his family out to graze. This is the central conflict of the movie, the passing of that title onto Greg and seeing if he is worthy. Unfortunately, there is no such figure to guide either the horrendously unfunny screenplay or the large, famous ensemble cast to greener pastures.