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What the Critics are Saying about the Ed Helms/Owen Wilson Film, 'Father Figures'

By Dustin Rowles | Reviews | December 24, 2017 |

By Dustin Rowles | Reviews | December 24, 2017 |

Father Figures is not the big, broad comedy one might be led to believe by the marketing. It’s more of a lower-key, boring comedy. That is to say, it’s bad, but it’s bad in unexpected ways!” — Dustin Rowles,

“In Father Figures, Ed Helms plays a proctologist, or a guy who spends most of his days peering into assholes. It’s a perfect metaphor for this movie.” — Dustin Rowles,

“The fact that Ed Helms is considered by anyone as a ‘comedian,’ is a profound insult to every other working comedic actor today. The producers could have hired almost literally any other comedic actor on the planet and gotten a better result, and the fact that they still chose Helms says all you need to know about the thought process behind Father Figures.” — Dustin Rowles,

Father Figures features the best performance of Ed Helms’ career. (That is in no way a compliment)” — Dustin Rowles,

“If you ever wanted to know what it is like to witness Terry Bradshaw and Ving Rhames describe in great detail what it’s like to receive a blow job from a character played by Glenn Close, Father Figures is the only movie in town equipped to meet your bucket list needs.” — Dustin Rowles,

“There are a brief few moments in the movie where Ed Helms’ character believes he just had a one-night stand with his sister. It is the only sequence in the film that elicits anything resembling a reaction north of apathy, and that reaction is a mix of revulsion and ‘Well, at least his would-be sister is played by Katie Aselton.” — Dustin Rowles,

“Whenever Katie Aselton (The League) is onscreen, Father Figures manages to transcend terrible and approach something close to less than mediocre. Unfortunately, Aselton is featured for only about 10 minutes.” — Dustin Rowles,

“Helms and Wilson play twin brothers on a road trip in search of their birth father. It’s exactly what you might imagine being trapped in a car with Ed Helms and Owen Wilson for two hours and five minutes.” — Dustin Rowles,

“As Helms and Wilson travel across America meeting their potential fathers, viewers may find themselves returning to the lobby of the theater periodically to check the movie poster if only to see how many candidates remain from the roster of faces before the film finally, mercifully ends.” — Dustin Rowles,

Father Figures comes from screenwriter Justin Malen, responsible for one of the blandest, most talent-wasting comedies of 2016, Office Christmas Party. Father Figures wishes it were even a quarter as good as Office Christmas Party. On the flipside, at least, no talent is wasted in Father Figures because very little talent is available to waste.” — Dustin Rowles,

“There is an actual scene in the film where Owen Wilson’s character and a toddler urinate on each other in a public restroom. I got nothing.” — Dustin Rowles,

“The screenplay for Father Figures feels like someone took a lot of road-trip tropes and threw them in a blender, but the blender crapped out halfway through, caught on fire, and Owen Wilson and a toddler had to urinate on it to extinguish the flames. Actually, that would have been a better film.” — Dustin Rowles,

“The need for this movie’s existence is equal to the need for Ed Helms’ post-Daily Show career, which is to say: It is baffling, inexplicable, and completely unnecessary. It’s long, long past time to give someone else his slot. Anyone else.” — Dustin Rowles,

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Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.