Tammy (Melissa McCarthy) is having a bad day. She’s totaled her clunker car, gotten fired from her thankless job at a greasy burger joint and, instead of finding comfort at home, finds her husband getting comfortable with the neighbor in her own house. It’s time to take her boom box and book it. The bad news is she’s broke and without wheels. The worse news is her grandma, Pearl (Susan Sarandon), is her only option-with a car, cash, and an itch to see Niagara Falls. Not exactly the escape Tammy had in mind. But on the road, with grandma riding shot gun, it may be just what Tammy needs.
My Opinion: Melissa McCarthy’s turned herself into a box office champion in the last few years, so it makes some sense that she’d use her current star power to develop a project for herself. It’s disappointing that the end result is something as lackluster as Tammy. While McCarthy can do sweet and shy perfectly (see her television roles), her box office persona works best when she has a “straight man” opposite her, like Jason Bateman or Sandra Bullock. Here, she splits the crazy and contained roles with Susan Sarandon as her grandmother, and it results in a lack of strong characterization.
What’s worse: the plot just meanders most of the time, with occasional fits that try to add some dramatic tension to the film. Said dramatic moments seem like an effort to add depth to Tammy and her grandmother, but are too awkwardly forced in. It’s a shame, really. Tammy is a waste of McCarthy’s talents, and it woefully misuses most of its cast (including Allison Janney and Toni Collette). The only cast member who gets to shine, somewhat, is Susan Sarandon, who seems to be having a ball with this role.