Why Him? Review

So I watched Why Him?…


I wasn’t particularly looking forward to seeing this film. Its trailer seemed a bit generic and hadn’t inspired any real laughter in me. But – as is often the case – when I went to the cinema it was the only movie I was in time to see. Also – as is also often the case – I ended up loving it even though I expected to hate it.

Okay, basic plot: Ned Fleming (Bryan Cranston) is a conservative father and businessman from the Midwest. When his daughter Stephanie (Zoey Deutch) invites him and the rest of the family to visit her at college, he gets the shock of his life. Not only is Stephanie dating but she’s dating possibly the last person he would have pictured her with – a brash, foul-mouthed, internet billionaire named Laird (James Franco). While Laird’s unconventional charm wins over most of his family, Ned remains apprehensive and secretly schemes to destroy their relationship.


This film is surprisingly rather funny. In fact, I’d even go as far as saying it’s hilarious. A great deal of this film’s humour is due to the wacky and uninhibited craziness that James Franco brings to the character of Laird. Franco runs wild and it’s a delight to watch. Every inappropriate comment, every ill-timed curse word is delivered perfectly. But this craziness wouldn’t mean much without a straight man to bounce  it off of. Bryan Cranston is a fantastic actor and he does a wonderful job being the sobering influence throughout the film. But don’t be fooled, Cranston doesn’t merely react to Franco’s madness and contributes more than a few jokes of his own.

I really enjoyed how ridiculous this film’s script is. Each joke continuously pushes the envelope and when you think that the film couldn’t get any dirtier, that’s when you find yourself knee deep in a bukkake joke. For your own enjoyment, I’d Google what bukkake is, just so you don’t feel left out when the joke is dropped. I’d stay away from Image or Video searches, just an Urban dictionary definition will do. This film’s script truly is funny but I once again have to praise James Franco because without him, I imagine it would have fallen flat.


The film’s plot isn’t the most original and you’ll have it figured it out just by looking at the film’s poster. It reminded me a lot of Pauly Shore’s Son In Law, which is a real compliment because (even thought it’s been years since I’ve seen it) I remember it being hilarious. Two people who shouldn’t like each other eventually end up loving each other. We’ve seen this premise a billion times in film. But, as I often say, if your film lacks originality, make sure it has entertainment and this film has that in spades.

There’s also plenty of celebrity cameos in this film which I loved. I don’t want to get into names but there’s a few up-and-comers that you’ll probably recognise and a pair of legends that you will definitely recognise. My favourite of these was Kaley Cuoco’s appearance as a piece of wonderful artificial intelligence. Absolute gold!

Overall, Why Him? is funny and what else do you want from a comedy but to make you laugh? James Franco is the star of this film and everything great about it flows through him. It’s worth taking a trip to the cinema and could be a great date movie. 7/10


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