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Me Time To Shine? Or Me Time Out?

Photo by charlesdeluvio on Unsplash

While most movies have a broad appeal, there are some movies that you can tell are dedicated to a specific demographic, like Top Gun: Maverick being the most DadTM product since the model train set. Me Time is also a parent’s movie, though it specifically targets the stay-at-home parent.

Sonny (Kevin Hart) is a stay-at-home dad, and when his wife Maya (Regina Hall) decides she needs a trip to bond with their kids, he decides to reconnect with his party animal friend Huck (Mark Wahlberg). The premise is a stay-at-home parent’s dream; a chance to leave their responsibilities behind for a week and relive their glory days.

It’s hard to place Me Time’s tone. It’s obviously not for kids; the characters constantly curse, there is some mild gore and there are several references to drugs and sex.

Otherwise, though, the writing seems straight out of a family comedy film. The two big turning points in the film are when Sonny hosts a party at his house, and when he realizes he’s forcing his son to pursue Sonny’s dreams instead of his own, two common tropes in family friendly comedies.

Viewers may be surprised to find out that this movie received an R-rating; it never really feels that explicit. This seems like a result of the movie’s strong focus on stay-at-home parents. The movie is raunchier than the ones a parent would watch with their kids, but it remains relatable to parents who generally don’t get out much any more, so it never gets intensely explicit in this regard.

Unfortunately the movie feels somewhat toothless, with most of its jokes feeling cliché or predictable. The parent pandering also comes through in the movie’s fixation on Eddie Murphy’s Raw and the musician Seal, both of which were probably very cool to those who grew up in the 80s and 90s but are quite dated now.

The story is not the best either, as it jumps around too much to find its own identity. It goes from Sonny trying to enjoy his time at home, to him camping out in the wilderness with Huck, to him trashing his wife’s coworker’s house when he suspects that this coworker is trying to flirt with her, to throwing a party at his house, to running his son’s talent show. It never focuses on any single of these instances long enough for them to be interesting, and the end result is a collection of half-baked hijinks that don’t mesh well together.

Overall, this movie offers little for most audiences, especially as the stay-at-home parent becomes less prominent in our time. It’s inoffensive enough that it might be a good movie to watch with a big group of people or with your parents, but it’d probably be better to try and find something that at least one of you would actually like.

Rating: 2/5

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