- Movie Rating -

First Family (1980)

| December 25, 1980

First Family is the worst kind of comedy.  The kind in which the producers have convinced themselves that if they pack in enough popular comedians then some kind of magic might come out the other end.  What emerges is a hopeless comedy void, a movie in which nothing works, there are no laughs and you come away with a splitting headache.

This is suppose to be a political satire, but that requires sharp wit, keen insights and great comic timing.  The problem with this movie is that it’s struggling to find a joke that works.  The characters are searching for a purpose: Newhart plays The President of the United States who needs a victory, Kahn plays the first lady with a fondness for the bottle, and Radner plays the first daughter whose virginity becomes a tiresome running joke.

Added to that is a joke about and African ambassador’s attempts to show middle-class white people how it feels to be oppressed, an unwise costume party featuring the Vice President as a pink bunny and a painfully unfunny summit meeting in which the American Ambassador gets into an insult game with an Arab representative.  This isn’t just bad, it’s painful.

About the Author:

Jerry Roberts is a film critic and operator of two websites, Armchair Cinema and Armchair Oscars.
(1980) View IMDB Filed in: Uncategorized