Starring: Jennifer Lopez, Jane Fonda, Michael Vartan
Director: Robert Luketic
Running Time: 101 mins
Monster-In-Law is an American film about a woman who becomes engaged to a wealthy doctor, but soon finds herself in a living nightmare when her demanding future mother-in-law tries everything to reverse their engagement.
This is a really silly, fluffy movie. But I have to say that I had quite a lot of fun with it. Whether it’s a bit of a guilty pleasure or the fact that it’s just a decent, easy-going movie, Monster-In-Law manages to deliver more laughs than expected, with surprisingly fun performances from leads Jennifer Lopez and Jane Fonda in what could have been painfully irritating roles.
And that’s where I want to start, because this story has all the hallmarks of a film that could really grate on you. It’s a ridiculous plot about a woman locked in a feud with her demanding future mother-in-law, who continues to protest her innocence to her darling son.
That kind of gaslight-heavy comedy can more often than not be the recipe for infuriating hijinks that deliver more dispiriting bickering than fun-loving laughs. However, for some reason, Monster-In-Law manages to push its plot to such a ridiculous point that it is actually rather funny to watch.
Make no mistake, this isn’t a masterpiece of comedy. But it is a film that knows not to take itself too seriously, and that makes a world of difference. There’s no excessive focus on the romantic relationship between Jennifer Lopez and her boring fiancé played by Michael Vartan, but instead all the time given to the chaos that unfolds between her and Jane Fonda, playing her future mother-in-law.
The feud can get a little repetitive at points, but both Lopez and especially Fonda put their all into these performances, and seem to be having a good bit of fun as the plot unfolds into more and more ridiculous territory.
Simply put, Monster-In-Law is an easy, light-hearted and funny Hollywood comedy. It’s no masterpiece, but it doesn’t take itself too seriously, and with energetic lead performances delivers lots of fluffy laughs throughout. So, that’s why I’m giving it a 7.4 overall.