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Meet the Fockers Review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0

    out of 100

    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 40

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    Does Meet the Fockers make you laugh? Sure it does, from time to time. Just lower your expectations to the altitude of the gag that's showcased in the trailer, the one in which Jinx the cat flushes a little dog named Moses down a toilet.

  • 50

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    The movie is pleasant enough, but never quite reaches critical mass as a comedy.

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  • 50

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Allison Benedikt

    Though it's hard not to play it, the expectations game is a dangerous one, especially for sequels. And Roach's original, just like his overexposed star, set us up good.

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  • 50

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Sheri Linden

    Feels jammed into a sitcom-shaped bid for laughs.

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  • 63

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    It's a silly good time, and that's something these days.

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  • 67

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Lisa Schwarzbaum

    The old-pro twosome of Streisand and Hoffman make such sexy and inviting ethnics (as a certain kind of movie likes to think of a certain kind of Jewish character) that they blithely prevail over the been-there-done-that gags.

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For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Iffy for 14+

Lots of sexual humor in forced family farce.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that in the pursuit of laughs, Meet the Fockers stretches the PG-13 rating in terms of subject matter and language. There are frequent, vivid discussions about and references to: sexual repression, sensuality, breast-feeding, circumcision, vasectomies, masturbation, and the sex act itself. However, other than some gentle kissing and embracing, the only actual sexual behavior on camera is a dog that simulates sex with anything that moves and even some things that don’t. Language is coarse throughout, with mild swearing ("s--t," , "asshole," "crap," "bastard"), toilet humor (literally and figuratively), and constant talk of body parts and bodily functions (breasts, farts, poop, breast-feeding, virginity, climax, and more). The family name -- Focker -- is the source of an unending volley of puns and innuendo. In addition, the comedy tries hard to be both politically incorrect and to exaggerate all manner of stereotypes (ethnic, occupational, gender-based); it succeeds in these efforts.

  • Families can talk about stereotyping. What kinds of stereotypes did you recognize in the movie? Were they funny, and if so, why? Where do stereotypes come from? What are the positives and negatives of stereotypes?
  • Talk about how sex is used in the movie. There's no explicit sex, but plenty of sexual talk. How did you react to it? Why do you think the filmmakers decided to use sexual humor so heavily?

The good stuff
  • message true2

    Messages: Despite vast cultural differences between people, understanding and respect for differences can lead to satisfying, close friendships. Though taken to extremes in this film, love, warmth, and openness lead to stable, long-lasting relationships.

  • rolemodels true0

    Role models: On the plus side: good parenting is a primary goal of each of the film’s main characters. Some gender roles are turned upside down: a leading male character is a nurse; a bright, vibrant lawyer finds his true calling as a parent and househusband who is supported by his psychologist wife. On the negative side, there’s lots of stereotyping that is meant to be over-the-top and funny: Jewish people, a Latina housekeeper (beloved, but played as a broad caricature), uptight "WASP" behavior, law enforcement seen as either harsh and rigid or inept and buffoon-like.

What to watch for
  • violence false2

    Violence: There are a number of minor pratfalls and accidents, all intended to be funny. Some examples: a dog is flushed down the toilet (and saved within moments); a backyard football game leads to a back injury (the character recovers quickly); a member of the Focker clan is injected with sodium pentathol; a character is attacked with a stun gun and has a brief “funny” seizure. In the background of one scene, a clip of a violent moment in the film Scarface appears on a television screen.

  • sex false3

    Sex: There is no overt sexual activity, but much of the film’s humor is based on sex. Beginning with frequent wordplay on the "Focker" name, this film is filled with sexual innuendo, sexual references, humor at the expense of the characters’ sexuality, as well as discussion of sexual acts, and bodily functions. The senior Dr. Focker is a sex therapist and is introduced conducting a "sensuality class" for elderly couples. In the film’s first scene, a male nurse starts to deliver a baby. A plastic breast is worn on numerous occasions by male characters to encourage a toddler to drink his mother’s milk. An oversexed dog simulates sex with a cat, a doll, and anything else he can find.

  • language false3

    Language: Non-stop risqué language, always for laughs. There are breast-feeding jokes, "boob" jokes, poop jokes, fart jokes, and jokes and conversations about vasectomies, virginity, masturbation, circumcisions, and more. Language includes multiple uses of "s--t" in various forms, plus "ass," "crap," "hell," etc. A baby repeatedly says "asshole" (his first word). Some typical lines are: "Is your vagina happy?" "I gave her a matinee today," and "Does she climax regularly?"

  • consumerism false1

    Consumerism: A few minor product placements: visuals of Sesame Street’s Elmo, a mention of Underwood Ham, and a Starbuck’s coffee sign in the background of one scene.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false1

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Champagne, wine, and other alcoholic beverages are consumed during dinner and at some social events. A former CIA agent administers sodium pentathol (truth serum) to an unsuspecting victim.