'We're the Millers' brings laughs

August 22, 2013 

>I distinctly remember groaning throughout "Bad Teacher," a 2011 Cameron Diaz comedy, but especially when her frail frame traipses out in a red bikini and stilettos to jiggle (if that's even possible) around and get the film a few more male viewers. There was no substance to the scene, no context.

But when Jennifer Aniston pulled the same move in "Horrible Bosses" it wasn't gratuitous. Easily the best part of "Horrible Bosses," Aniston was a kinky boss that was sexually harassing her assistant and playing striptease in front of the living room window for anyone to see. Whereas Diaz's striptease was desperate, Aniston's was appropriate and hilarious.

Whether Aniston's role as a stripper in "We're the Millers" is necessary to the film is debatable; she could have easily been any other money challenged (insert occupation here) and the film would have still worked. But then again, there'd be little reason for her to give a lap dance, the scene I would argue was the basis for getting the film produced. There is something wrong about watching Aniston do a pole dance. She looks spectacular, but there is something about a 45-year-old woman dancing in a strip club that is sadder than it is funny.

The film's actual premise is about a lazy small time drug dealer named David (Jason Sudeikis) who is caught in a jam and needs to pick up a 'small' amount of marijuana from Mexico to fix it. But how on Earth do you cross one of the world's most protected borders with the thing the border patrol is looking for?

How does he get around it? He hires people to pretend to be his wholesome family. He convinces a stripper (Jennifer Aniston), a snarky runaway (Emma Roberts) and his next door neighbor (Will Poulter) to pose as his wife and children. Together, they are the Millers.

The movie has all the trimmings for being a crude road trip movie, but the film's downfall is that at times it is crude for the sake of being crude. Some situations surpass all logic, without good enough payoffs to not make our inner dialogue go, "what?" Regardless, the film packs enough laughs to keep us entertained for an hour and a half.

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