Sisters Might Be Rare Miss for Fey, Poehler

Critics split between 'comic gold' and 'stupid movie'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 18, 2015 10:43 AM CST

Two very different siblings return to their childhood home to pack up before new owners move in, then decide to throw one last party in the R-rated comedy Sisters, starring Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. There's no denying the pair's chemistry, but not all critics are loving what else the film has to offer. Here's what they're saying:

  • Fey and Poehler manage to "spin an otherwise slender premise into antic, quippily lighthearted comic gold," writes Ann Hornaday at the Washington Post. The pair "fall easily into sync" and "can be counted on to infuse even their crassest moments with disarming likability," she adds. "Sisters goes for broke in both directions, with winning, helplessly entertaining results. Even at its naughtiest, it's never not nice."
  • Kristin Tillotson admits Sisters "is as loosey-goosey as a movie can get without falling apart, but the amusing twosome's chemistry mostly overcomes the chaos." While the plot is "riddled with more holes than an age-inappropriate party dress," the film is "actually better than the promo trailers—which had anxious fans fearing the hilarious pair had lost their touch," she writes at the Minneapolis Star Tribune. It helps that the vulgar script was "tailor-made" for its stars.

  • Joe Morgenstern, on the other hand, wonders if Fey and Poehler have indeed lost their touch. Sisters is "really bad fun that’s badly directed, badly written, badly performed, and bad news for anyone who cares about the quality of big-screen comedy," he writes at the Wall Street Journal. The big party that's the focus of the film "turns into one of the most boring bacchanals ever filmed," while the overall flick is "lazy, and demeaning to the talented people at its center."
  • Basically, it's "a stupid movie," adds Bruce Kirkland at the Toronto Sun. "You feel that there is a good and maybe even a meaningful comedy here. But it never gets its act together," he says. There are "spikes of absurdity," but in between are "flat-lining sections of bad plotting, haphazard direction, and poor selection of secondary characters," including those played by Maya Rudolph and Bobby Moynihan.
(Fey and Poehler will reunite again on SNL on Saturday.)

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