Cheaper by the Dozen 2

The kids and I watched this together. I know I'm not supposed to, but I think I actually liked this better than the first one. The first Cheaper by the Dozen (with Steve Martin and Bonnie Hunt; not the old one) seemed to have even more ridiculously chaotic moments than the second. Though I admit that Steve Martin was physically sillier in this one. Okay, maybe I can't defend my preference for the second one very well. It's true that these funny depictions of large families do no service to large families. But this one had two large families, one with twelve kids, one with eight, and one of the points of the movie is the nearly opposite parenting styles, and how both families turn out good kids (although kids from both families get into trouble).

Also, I liked that the trophy wife of the "competing" family turns out to be pretty cool. And that the kids are all nice and like each other. And that it's just the dads who are lame and overly competitive. Okay, I do find the dad-is-stupider-than-mom characterization annoying and harmful (Everybody Loves Raymond and just about every other sitcom around, for example), but it could so easily have leaked over into the kids in this movie, and it didn't.

I always criticize birth scenes in movies, and this one's no exception. But the criticisms are minor: I don't think the family has to wear scrubs in the delivery room nowadays (though I suppose it's possible in a small resort town hospital), and the labor went pretty fast for a first-time mom. But who cares about that? I'm writing it, but I don't think I care that much anymore.


  1. Havent' seen it. Haven't wanted too. Now, maybe I'll give it a try. If I can get it free at the library, that is. It's one I can let the kids see anyway and those are sort of rare. We watched "HOOT" the other day. Watch that and let me know what you think. The kids liked it pretty well. Also, I've been getting some Jerry Lewis ones for the kids and they've like them. I got "The Disorderly Orderly" and "The Delicate Delinquent." They were OK, but also pretty darn stupid. But I am all for getting these old movies for the kids. I want to get "the Family Jewel" with those characters that Amy and I used to imitate all the time.

  2. I didn't want to see it much, either, but I was looking for something to watch with the kids, and that's what I found. They liked it, too. Let me know what you think. Sometimes I wonder how much my mood, movie-viewing situation (theater, video, taped from TV with lots of commercials?), what I've been reading, etc., influences whether I like a movie or not. So I wouldn't try to argue that Cheaper by the Dozen 2 is a great movie or anything. I just enjoyed it more than I thought I would. The magic of lowered expectations, I guess! Jerry Lewis is a great idea. My kids have seen a couple of Abbot and Costello movies (which they found kind of scary, actually, 'cause they were about a mummy and Frankenstein, I think) and one Danny Kaye movie. I do like to watch older movies with them.

  3. I also liked the second one better than the first. Our family went to a ward member's house and watched it projected on to a 16x10 foot screen in their backyard. It made for a fun evening, whether the movie was the best or not.

  4. That does sound like a fun way to watch it. It's nice to be able to watch something with the entire family, something that everyone will enjoy and that (probably) won't be inappropriate for anyone.


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