Directed by Alan Fickman, Parental Guidance is a somewhat entertaining comedy starring Billy Crystal and Bette Midler as a pair of grandparents with Marisa Tomei as their estranged daughter. Unfortunately, the movie is also quite mediocre. Though, it’s probably one of the better movies Fickman has directed.
The movie began with Billy Crystal’s character losing his job as a baseball announcer. Meanwhile, his daughter and husband decide to go on vacation prompting her to reluctantly ask her parents to look after her kids. They reluctantly agree, but he’s more interested in an upcoming job opportunity with the X Games. Also, the children each have problems which they each overcome throughout the picture. And the same can be said with the daughter’s obsession with the being the perfect parents (due to her upbringing). Unfortunately, that obsession was also staring to backfire.
Overall, this movie was entertaining. But it was far from being a great movie or even a good one. It suffered from a cliché, unoriginal screenplay that was characterized by a tendency to get quite cheesy (especially with how the middle child overcomes his problem). If anything, the only thing I could really say about this movie was that the youngest son caused plenty of laughs. But the movie fell flat whenever he wasn’t on the screen (and sometimes when he was).
That being said, I can’t say I didn’t enjoy this movie at all. In fact, I did; but I can’t say I’d ever want to watch this again either. I give it two stars out of five for having enough funny moments to be watchable but not enough to save it from mediocrity.