The tragedy of losing Robin Williams will continue to be felt in the coming months, for the actor left behind several unreleased performances. The first of these is A Merry Friggin’ Christmas, in which Williams co-stars with Joel McHale as a father and son on the Christmas road trip from hell.
McHale plays Boyd Mitchler, who spends a dreaded Christmas with his father (Williams) and mother (Candace Bergen). When Boyd realizes that he left all of his son’s gifts at home, he heads off on the road in the company of his father and younger brother to try and make the 8-hour trip before Christmas morning. On the way they encounter comedic trials a-plenty, including an encounter with Santa Claus, all of which is to be expected in a family road trip movie.
While Williams was not always dependable for choosing perfect films to showcase his talents, he was almost uniformly entertaining in any incarnation. A Merry Friggin’ Christmas looks no different, with Williams mugging for the camera and indulging in his patented brand of madness that we all miss so dearly. With comedians like McHale and Clark Duke present as well, we can at least hope for an enjoyable slice of holiday entertainment.
I think many of us are willing to give a lot of space to Williams following his death – I don’t know that I might have been more skeptical about this film if it did not represent one of the last time we will get to see the actor on the big screen. But at the same time, this looks at least as good as any other holiday movie of the same type, and with more comedic chops than most.
A Merry Friggin’ Christmas will come to theaters on November 7. You can watch the latest trailer from Hulu and see what you think.