review by Bobby Blakey
Like most I love a good comedy. There are a lot of elements that have to come together for them to deliver. The cast is first and foremost and how well they are willing to go all in. The latest hoping to bring the laughs is Vacation Friends starring John Cena, Lil Rel Howery, Yvonne Orji and Meredith Hagner, but does it deliver or is it a vacation you would rather forget?
Vacation Friends follows straight-laced Marcus and Emily are befriended by wild, thrill-seeking partiers Ron and Kyla at a resort in Mexico. Living in the moment, the usually level-headed couple lets loose to enjoy a week of uninhibited fun and debauchery with their new “vacation friends.” Months after their walk on the wild side, Marcus and Emily are horrified when Ron and Kyla show up uninvited at their wedding, creating chaos and proving that what happens on vacation, doesn’t necessarily stay on vacation.
From the trailer it looked as though this film was going to bring that chaotic type of comedy that will either deliver an insane amount of laughs or be really irritating. Thankfully it works more than it doesn’t but will depend on how you feel about the cast. I love Cena when he cuts loose and his willingness to play against type and be goofy always works for me. He is all in here and looks to be having a blast with it all.
Lil Rel has continued to make a name for himself and with good reason. He is able to bring the funny, but also easily play the straight man which he does more here. The duo of Cena and Howery doesn’t seem like it should work, but it’s the reason this film works at all. There are some jokes that fall flat here and there, but I laughed way more than I didn’t. The biggest issue with the film is it falls into the standard by the numbers trope where you know where it is all headed and not overly original, but the fun of seeing Cena and Howery in all their silliness makes it still worth checking it out.
This is a decent comedy that does what it set out to do. It’s the kind of film that you just have to dive in and have fun without expecting a whole lot. If you like any of those involved then give the film a chance and decide for yourself. Check out Vacation Friends streaming exclusively now on Hulu.