Of all the different forms of comedy movies that are currently on the market, it can’t be avoided that one of the fastest to rise is the hybrid of the comedy with the “chick flick”. A form that really took off with the release of Bridesmaids as well as the emergence of a wealth of noteworthy comediennes (Tina Fey, Melissa McCarthy, Amy Poehler, Kristen Wiig…) it seems something of a motherlode has been hit at aiming the previously male-occupied raunchy comedy towards women. Fun Mom Dinner is one of the latest in a long line of these, arriving on something of a low-profile but with a surprising amount to recommend itself.
Amongst the starry cast are Toni Colette, Molly Shannon, Bridgett Everett and Kate Aselton as four stressed out mums who decide to get together for a night on the town. What follows is mostly undemanding and conventional but also somewhat fun. It’s almost like a simulation of a fun night out with the girls (or what one would seem to be from my male perspective) albeit with a slight twist two-thirds of the way through.
However, when it comes to embracing its fun and frivolous nature, the film plays towards its strengths. With such high-calibre names in the credits (alongside the likes of Adam Scott, Adam Levine, Rob Huebel, Paul Rudd and Claudia O’Doherty, even if I do think she’s under-utilised) you’re in good hands and your attention is held, even if that’s partly thanks to the modest 73-minute runtime and whilst we spent the bulk of the film with the mums, the occasional glimpses of husbands Adam Scott and Rob Huebel together make for a nice slower change-of-pace, even if they’re not enough to fully support the film on their own terms.
The film’s main deficiency is its attempts at drama. In a film so resolutely light and fun-loving the film’s occasional lapses into more serious waters are misjudged both in an early confrontation between two leads and to a lesser extent an extra-marital potential hookup which are both given way more weight than is needed and actually kills the general spirit of joy that the rest of the film cultivates and showing a far greater capacity for the film-maker’s in producing comedy than drama.
Ultimately, Fun Mom Dinner is fun and does have moms (although the dinner aspect gets lost pretty quickly).A film that won’t have you gasping for laughter but pleasant, warm and genial aided by a solid cast of pros. If you have evening spare, crack open a bottle of wine and enjoy this film. It may not be worth return visits but its a worthwhile visit if you just want to do it once.
Fun Mom Dinner is available on digital download from Monday, August 7th; rated 15. Check out the trailer below.