Parental Guidance [Blu-Ray] Andy Fickman

Parental Guidance [Blu-Ray] Andy Fickman
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Early in Parental Guidance, aging sports commentator Artie Decker (Billy Crystal) is hauled into his manager's office and given "the talk." It seems, though he's good at his job, he's a bit too old school for local sports. When asked how many apps he has on his device, he recoils in confusion: "Device?!" Artie Decker is an old man living in a social media world, which certainly won't cut it if he's going to land his dream job commentating in the professional leagues. Despondent and having given way too much energy to terribly broad, generational confusion humour, he goes home to wife Diane (Bette Midler), who reassures him that even though dreams don't always come true, she's there with a thousand-dollar hairdo and condescending smile. Suddenly, the phone rings! It's their daughter, Alice (Marisa Tomei), and, out of character for her type-A personality, she's asking her parents to watch her kids while she goes on vacation. The crazy thing is that Artie and Diane know that their parenting style differs vastly from Alice's — her being the self-help idealist and them more trial and error. This inevitably leads to life lessons and an abundance of overly contrived comic set-ups involving urinating on a skateboarding ramp and chasing kids around an orchestra. It's all as dreadful and unfunny as it sounds, staying true to its theme of pointing out that modern life is a pile of crap by using jokes that were probably scrapped from that classic Hulk Hogan vehicle Mr. Nanny. But even though the comedy is painful and the actors, save the kids, all completely aware that this is just a paycheque, the implication that parents are far too cautious and anal with their kids these days isn't exactly unfounded. The trajectory gag of asking small children to "use their words" when they're acting like little brats communicates its point effectively and precisely, pointing out that setting up borders and rules, while avoiding excess placation, is necessary in preparing a child for the real world, where people couldn't care less about their feelings. Included with the Blu-Ray is a commentary track, because the target audience of nine-year olds is sure to care what Andy Fickman has to say about falling behind on his shooting schedule, along with some deleted scenes and a gag-inducing gag reel. It adds no dimension to the film, nor would anyone expect it to. (Fox)