LOVE THE COOPERS (0 out of 10) Directed by Jessie Nelson; Written by Steven Rogers; Starring John Goodman, Diane Keaton, Ed Helms, Marisa Tomei, Olivia Wilde, Alan Arkin and Anthony Mackie; Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, language and some sexuality; Running time 107 minutes; In wide release November 13, 2015.
Despite how crazy and over commercialized the holidays have become, at the very least, everyone can sit back and watch some fun, family (and some not-so-family) movies to relax and enjoy the season. “Love the Coopers” desperately wants to be included as one of those classics, but it’s so abysmally horrible that naughty children should be getting it instead of coal in their stockings from here on out.
The plot, if one could call it that, is so derivative and overused, it feels like it was dreamed up by a ten year-old. Sam and Charlotte Cooper (John Goodman and Diane Keaton in wasted performances) are hoping to get their family together for one last Christmas before they finally divorce after 40 years of marriage. Their kids and Charlotte’s sister are all a mess, blame their problems on the rest of their family and are just downright nasty or childish. Eleanor (Olivia Wilde) can’t find love because her fiancé cheated on her, so she hits on a soldier going off to war (Jake Lacy) at the airport and convinces him to pretend to be her boyfriend at Christmas dinner. How does she do this? She relentlessly mocks him for his assumed political views and for being willing to put his life on the line for his country, and he goes along with it! Hank (Ed Helms) is trying to figure out how to get a job and deal with his recent divorce, but no one cares because he is insipid and annoying. Charlotte’s sister, Emma (Marisa Tomei), is terrible at shoplifting and after getting caught and arrested tries to play therapist for the gay cop who is taking her to jail (Anthony Mackie), and he listens and lets her go because cops always absorb life lessons from thieves. Oh, and the whole thing is narrated by – SPOILER ALERT – the family dog as voiced by Steve Martin. Yes, the dog is telling the story for no good, damn reason.
This movie is horrible and easily one of, if not the worst, of the year. Being forced to watch “Pixels” or “Fantastic Four” again would be a joy compared to this because at least there were a few bright spots in those movies, which can’t be said about this drivel. Shame on everyone involved with this. All of the actors have done great work, and it’s obvious they’re all slumming or only agreed to do it because the director was blackmailing them. There’s no other reason such talented people would be involved in something as bad as this.
Don’t go see this. Don’t check it out at the dollar theater. Don’t get it on Redbox or On Demand. Don’t even watch the trailer. “Love The Coopers” is one of the worst of the year. It’s poison and will make you hate Christmas, hate your family and quite possibly your dog.