Dan Mazer’s upcoming mismatched comedy Dirty Grandpa is certainly not the first film to imagine what life is like for a soon-to-be-wed bachelor, but it may be the only one to send its token soon-to-be-wed bachelor on a road trip with his old, old man.
Placing Zac Efron at the crux as the straight-laced Jason Kelly, Mazer’s age-inappropriate flick picks up at a time when Kelly is left to console his recently-widowed grandfather (De Niro), though when a spontaneous detour takes they to Daytona for spring break, Kelly’s wedding plans are left hanging by a thread.
But that’s merely the context of the story, for the meat of Dirty Grandpa appears to center around Efron and De Niro as a hapless pair indulging in all manner of debauchery. It’s a bright and breezy set-up, and we can’t imagine that Mazer’s comedy will earn any praise for character-driven drama, but with two high-profile stars attached, the studio will be hoping to nurture a sleeper hit come January.
Dirty Grandpa has been slated for a release on January 22, which doesn’t necessarily fill us with confidence that the film will land a sizeable audience amid the award contenders and reruns of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
Jason Kelly [Zac Efron] is one week away from marrying his boss’s uber-controlling daughter, putting him on the fast track for a partnership at the law firm. However, when the straight-laced Jason is tricked into driving his foul-mouthed grandfather, Dick [Robert De Niro], to Daytona for spring break, his pending nuptials are suddenly in jeopardy. Between riotous frat parties, bar fights, and an epic night of karaoke, Dick is on a quest to live his life to the fullest and bring Jason along for the ride. Ultimately, on the wildest journey of their lives, “dirty” Grandpa and his uptight grandson discover they can learn from one another and form the bond they never had.