The movement of feminist centric gross-out comedy that started with Bridesmaids and will reach its nadir in next year’s Ghostbusters reboot rolls along through the holiday season with Sisters, reuniting former SNL Weekend Update co-anchors Tina Fey and Amy Poehler as developmentally disabled siblings who find their “adult lives” in crisis when their eternally put-upon parents threaten to sell their cherished childhood home. Infamous in their teen years amongst their peers for hosting raucous house parties, the girls decide to throw one last rager in order to re-live their former glory and stick it to the stuffy couple whose names are on the new deed.
Playing out mostly like a female led cross between Step Brothers and Old School, Sisters keeps the raunchy laughs coming and never really devolves into too sentimental of a conclusion, as these post-Apatow big screen comedies tend to do. Poehler and Fey are both great playing against the usual type, with Fey as the slob and Poehler the snob, the opposite of their last cinematic pairing, Baby Mama. Fellow SNL alums Bobby Moynahan, Kate McKinnon, Rachel Dratch and Maya Rudolph are strong in supporting roles and comedian Ike Barinholtz stands out as Poehler’s refreshingly awkward love interest. And for us wrestling nerds, John Cena turns up here just as he did earlier this year in Trainwreck and damn near steals the whole back half of the movie, playing hysterically against good guy type as a heavily tattooed drug dealer.
Releasing later this month, this is pretty smart counter programming on Universal’s part against the almighty monolith that is Star Wars. Folks shut out of the Kylo Ren show and settling for this shouldn’t be too bummed though, these Hard R comedies are always a blast to see in a packed house, and it’s especially funny when little kids or old people show up. One of my favorite movie going memories of the year was the herd of senior citizens walking out in disgust about 10 minutes into Trainwreck, coincidentally, right around the time of John Cena’s awkwardly hilarious sex scene.
Sisters opens everywhere on December 18th.