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Indie Comedy ‘Daddy Daughter Trip’ Embarks Where National Lampoon Left Off


The new movie, “Daddy Daughter Trip,” presents Rob Schneider (who also produces and directs it), John Cleese, Jackie Sandler, and Michael Bublé as himself, and introduces new stars in a heartwarming, zany, and crackling slapstick comedy.

The film hinges on Larry and Megan Bublé, and the anticipation their daughter, Meara, feels for her upcoming spring break from elementary school. The stage is set when Larry promises Meara (Miranda Scarlett Schneider) an outdoors adventure, an idea that Meara immediately savors with all her childlike imagination.

The thing is, Larry’s flop career as an inventor has drained the family’s funds. Disappointing his wife and daughter again is a major risk. If this feckless father rises from past failures to deliver a memorable wilderness voyage for Meara, their journey might change the course of their lives.

“Daddy Daughter Trip” embarks where “National Lampoon” left off, adding Schneider’s witty fighting spirit to the humor that makes us miss movies like “Vacation,” and “The Great Outdoors.” From decades past you might remember John Candy as Chet Ripley at the cabin door, stuttering “Big bear, chase me!” to warn his family until being trampled by 1000 pounds of grizzly. Or Ellen and Clark Griswold, plus unamused kids, trekking through blizzard conditions for a Christmas tree that bursts beyond the size of their living room already filled with visiting elders and cousins. Candy, Chevy Chase, and that whole franchise presented relatives trying to do normal things while showing that everybody has their unique “something” capable of igniting wild events and hilarious reactions.

“Daddy Daughter Trip” provides floods of goofiness, yet is tethered to the forgotten reality of millions priced out in this inflationary economy. By working together, Meara and Larry explore how odds can be overcome, originality can outlive conformity, and loved ones are irreplaceable. Its uncensored range of expressions hits home for Americans pushed into corners. As the Bublés persist and their fortunes swing, the audience is reminded that obstacles are impacted a lot by how we see them, and laughter can make things better.

Singer of “Feeling Good” and “I Just Haven’t Met You Yet,” Michael Bublé, makes more than a cameo, and adds a mischievousness to Meara, Meg, and Larry’s last name. The real-world Bublé, plus Cleese, and other star performers help throw the film over the top.

Of course, not every poor parent of a fifth grader has the means to actualize their children’s wildest travel callings, but there’s a dream inside of every child. Parents pour themselves into helping them come true, and in the country we’ve known, there has often been an avenue for achieving it. How Meara’s imagined odyssey starts to become real in “Daddy Daughter Trip” holds more than meets the eye.

From Larry’s strengthening devotion to Megan and Meara, to his penchant for off-the-wall gizmos (even with a spotted record of success), his is a world where love in the heart meets up with innovation in the mind. In stating “necessity is the mother of invention,” Aesop may have been speaking of urgent junctures in parenting.

Off-camera qualities also make Schneider’s side-splitting creations welcomed in cinema. He has intelligently and outspokenly advocated for better evaluation of scientific indications and hard evidence contrary to lockdown-minded policies that hurt families and children. In raising healthy children, one of whom is his co-star, and in being an embattled freedom enthusiast who has overcome his own cancellation to get back on camera and delight the viewer, Schneider has been specializing in family upliftment for years. This makes him a target, unfortunately, and he revealed personal stories in late August about “sacrificing his career.”

Struggling for love is essential, lest we be reduced to impotent silence when elites taunt the people, like the bratty schoolyard harassing of Meara before the Bublés’ attitude of resolve kicks in. Indefatigable Americans gnaw at the bit to accomplish what matters, like families plumbing their energy reservoirs to give more to their children. With the sacrifices that go into it, the most minor victory as a family can pop with unequaled hilarity and joy.

When our position seems overpowered, we, like the Bublé family, scrap and believe. Children absorb their example, and Meara will grow enriched having learned of her father’s love. In their pathfinding, comical way, the freedom-loving Schneiders leave even the lampooners of Hollywood behind, shining brightly on the trail in the wacky yet relatable “Daddy Daughter Trip.”

The movie opens on Sept. 30 only at Harkins Theaters.

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