The War With Grandpa            review by Bobby Blakey

There is no question that Robert DeNiro is one of the best in the business. In the last few years he has continued to take on a variety of roles from his return to the crime drama in The Irishman to his small but great role in Joker. Some of my favorites are when he takes on comedy for the simple fact is it is polar opposite to what we have grown to expect from him. His latest film The War With Grandpa co-stars Christopher Walken, Uma Thurman, Laura Marano, Oakes Fegley, Rob Riggle, Cheech Marin and Jane Seymour, but does it bring the laughs or will it be a war not worth fighting? 

The War With Grandpa follows Sixth-grader Peter who is pretty much your average kid-he likes gaming, hanging with his friends and his beloved pair of Air Jordans. But when his recently widowed grandfather Ed moves in with Peter's family, the boy is forced to give up his most prized possession of all, his bedroom. Unwilling to let such an injustice stand, Peter devises a series of increasingly elaborate pranks to drive out the interloper, but Grandpa Ed won't go without a fight. Soon, the friendly combatants are engaged in an all-out war with side-splitting consequences. 

I admit I had low expectations for this one from the trailers and while it is fully meant as a family film for the younger audiences it was way more entertaining than I expected. The tone reminds of a mix between Diary of a Wimpy Kid infused with the chaos of Home Alone. It doesn’t always work, but still offers enough fun and craziness to entertain. Sure there are some big over the top moments that are more dangerous than just clean pranks, but that is part of the fun of these kinds of films.

The cast are all decent with great chemistry between Fegley and DeNiro. The bounce off each other with ease and have a dynamic that is both loving and competitive making you fully buy into this war. The rest of the cast feel a bit wasted for their talents, but looked to be having a great time. Seeing Walken, Cheech, and Seymour together like this with DeNiro just works and created a dynamic that I would love to see of them just hanging out in a different movie. The young actors here also have that same chemistry which is why the film works as a whole.

Its been a bit since I have seen Thurman and loved seeing her in this parent role with times to stretch her physical comedy chops which she does with ease. In the end this is a film geared towards kids so might not work for adults or just stress them out, but I ended up having way more fun with it than I thought I would and in this time of stress and upheaval is the kind of film we need.

Join the battle and check out The War With Grandpa in theaters now.

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