Overview: Robin Williams stars in a Robin Williams film featuring Robin Williams! When Robin Williams realizes that his family -that is the on-screen family of the character portrayed by the brilliant Robin Williams- hates him because he, Robin Williams, is a world-class comedy actor and also quite probably a pedophile, Robin Williams rents a recreational vehicle that he uses to transport the Robin Williams family across America, bringing laughs as only a fantastically relevant and bankable actor whose paycheck makes up the majority of the movie's budget (such as Robin Williams) can! Rated RW.
Director: Barry Sonnenfield, 2006
The Case For: Robin Williams
The Case Against: Robin Williams
Robin Williams? I love Robin Williams!
For whatever reason, people never gonna get tired of lobbing a few Oscars at dramatic actors every time they fake being weepy over their dying wife/child/hair care product franchise. But when it comes to long-term career prospects, pro comedians have it rougher. Usually these guys have one shtick -the Talking-in-Funny-Voices-While-Waving-Their-Arms-Around one, in Robin's case- and after a couple of decades of it no one is going to pay $10 to watch you be Robin Williams again for a few hours.
The secret to success, of course, is to abandon your humanity and start making 'family movies.' Kids are not exactly known for being Nobel Laureates, so you don't have to strain yourself coming up with material more original than 'pee pee doo doo' to get a laugh out of them, and their parents are just glad they can take the whole family to a movie that doesn't have exploding tits or ten-foot-tall bastardizations of wildlife who want to skewer you with their hip 'tudes. Better yet, sweaty Hollywood producers will practically soil themselves with glee at being able to tag your name onto this shit! You can't lose! Just make sure you don't forget to snort drugs until you can no longer feel shame!
RV is essentially the same movie as National Lampoon's Vacation, except the script was obviously thrown together by a sleep-deprived intern at three in the morning and also it isn't funny. But director Barry Sunnytits clearly expects Robin to carry the whole movie with his zany voices, droopy-eyed stare, and blood sacrifice of his dignity to the Paycheck Gods. The plot is standard: Daddy wants to spend time with his family, which consists of a 9-year old brat, his oddly attractive wife who coyly references wanting to fuck him every five seconds because jumpin' Jesus knows I get wet around the nethers every time I think of Robin's ape-like sex appeal, and some jailbait. His babies are all growing up and he is desperate to spend time with them, so he crams them into a box on wheels until their wills snap.
Here's a sampling of the "overhead bin full of laughs," which basically translates to "Robin Williams making me sad:"
- Robin Williams getting attacked by a CGI animal which, fortunately for Mom and Dad, doesn't seem to know how to sing any alt rock hits circa 1997.
- The Robin Williams family shitting themselves and fleeing when a family from a lower tax bracket makes an appearance. The other family is shown to be nice people at the end because they're secretly really smart but I'm pretty sure if that happened in real life it would be socialism. Don't try to tell me it wouldn't, my fairy godmother told me that's what socialism is and I'm sticking to it.
- Robin Williams' son, who enjoys a respectful emulation of African-American culture, getting in trouble with some other scrawny white people so Robin Williams has to go over there and 'jive talk' at them for what feels like a couple of geological epochs until the actors get embarrassed and leave.
- Robin Williams associating with riff-raff (dumb ones, this time) to clean out a toilet and the joke is that he wants them to go away but they don't so the end result is still Robin Williams only now he's covered in turds!! This is apparently Barry Sonnenfield's proudest achievement, as the DVD features a special featurette about it entitled THE SCOOP ON POOP.
- Robin Williams causing the RV to crash into shit, which then falls over, leading to Robin Williams' harpy of a wife screeching at him, so Robin Williams crashes into more shit. This was pretty much the most enjoyable part of the movie, because at least I don't get depressed thinking about gravity's tanking career prospects
- Sock puppets. With funny voices.