Who's In It: Ben Stiller, Robert De Niro, Owen Wilson, Blythe Danner, Teri Polo, Jessica Alba, Dustin Hoffman, Barbra Streisand
The Basics: Let's start with the title, which is just a place-holding lie. It's barely about the littlest Fockers at all, unless you count that that the biggest set piece in the film is their elaborate birthday party. But they had to call it something and The Focker Sequel Where Robert De Niro Takes Fake Viagra and Runs Around Spying on Ben Stiller Because Circumstantial Evidence Suggests He's Cheating on Teri Polo and Doing It with Jessica Alba was probably too much for people to remember. There's also a bit where Alba says to a hospital patient, "Relax your anus" and another part where a little Focker projectile vomits.
What's The Deal: I'm not bothered by the way that this franchise isn't about a family of realistically comedic people. I don't care that they're just stick figures who perform episodic bits to keep the barely existent plot moving and say borderline raunchy things involving their own family name. I like it when De Niro puts on his frowny face and Hoffman says hippie nonsense. But could the people in charge have used the artistically liberating comfort of box office goodwill that audiences already show these movies and made it more imaginative and funny than a run-of-the-mill sitcom? Because when you're easily outshined by any given episode of Rules of Engagement or Two and a Half Men that means there's a problem.
The Cast, In Terms Of Who Looked Least Interested To Be In The Movie: Blythe Danner and Teri Polo never have much to do in the Focker movies, so they can't really be factored into the discussion. Alba seems delighted to be young, alive and working. De Niro and Hoffman commit to the task no matter what movie they're in, even crap like this where they're just pulling faces (and that IS what they're doing here). So it's kind of a toss-up between Streisand and Stiller. The weight of the project rests on Stiller's shoulders and he appears to be in psychological pain for most of the running time, but it's really Barbra Streisand who seems like she can't be bothered to participate. There are scenes where it appears as though she's not even in the same room as the other people to whom she's allegedly speaking. Like maybe she had her home studio made up to look like a set and she just Skyped it all in.
I Kept A Running Tally Of Worn-Out, Busted, Vaguely "Naughty" Uses Of The Word "Focker" And Here Are The Results: A mere 10, which is much less than you expect you'll get if you've only watched the trailer, where they run rampant. Most of them involve De Niro sternly using Stiller's last name threateningly or calling him the Godfocker. So yeah, surprise, the franchise's lazy go-to laugh-getter has worn thin, as well.