Malavita: The Family


Robert De Niro, Michelle Pfeiffer and Tommy Lee Jones all star Discuss this article

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The Robert De Niro self-mockery train keeps on rolling! Everyone’s favourite Tribeca restaurant owner plays a New York mafioso boss hiding out in Normandy, France, along with his wife (Michelle Pfeiffer) and family, courtesy of the witness-protection program. The quiet life doesn’t suit the clan, however, as they can’t stop indulging their degenerate impulses, be it Dad clubbing anyone who faintly disrespects him, Mom blowing up a grocery store run by rabid anti-Americans or their precociously criminal-minded kids scamming their schoolmates with vicious abandon.

Director Luc Besson treats his protagonists as likable cartoons yet never provides a single reason to view them as anything less than remorseless, repugnant psychos. That’s merely one of many missteps in this lurching misfire, which wastes copious time on mirthless bantering with a cantankerous government agent (Tommy Lee Jones) before a finale that abruptly trades jokey comedy for violent shoot-outs. Such tone-deafness still isn’t nearly as dismal as De Niro’s tired spoofery of his iconic onscreen mob persona, which – culminating with his expat admiringly watching Goodfellas – is now in dire need of a whacking.

By Nick Schager
Time Out Doha,

Malavita: The Family

  • Duration: 111
  • Released: Wed, 25 Sep
  • Classification: 15+
  • Language: English
  • Director: Luc Besson
  • Stars: Robert De Niro, Michelle Pfeiffer, Dianna Agron, John D'Leo, Tommy Lee Jones, Jimmy Palumbo, Vincent Pastore

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