When luckless 11-year old Alexander experiences one of the most terrible, horrible days of his young life, he finds little sympathy from his family who all seem to have everything going their way. But he soon learns that he’s not alone in his bad luck when his parents (Jennifer Garner and Steve Carell) and siblings find themselves living a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day of their own.
To enjoy the silly antics of Alexander, one must turn off that part of their brain that questions the absurdity and simply sit back to appreciate the wacky shenanigans and surprising amount of innocent fun.
The story is obviously simple, but the cast is fully committed to selling the snowballing troubles this family find themselves in — giving us a movie that viewers of all ages can enjoy.
It may be corny and simplistic, but Alexander’s significantly better than the average family-comedy fare pushed out by the studios today. A number of gags just don’t work, but a few of them are laugh-out-loud funny as well.
And on a side note – it might almost be worth seeing just to say you saw a Disney movie that says “penis” a number of times and has a scene with male strippers in it (believe me, it’s still family-friendly, but it was just surprisingly jarring for a Disney movie… in a good way).
Alexander is a throwback to the movies that aimed to be nothing more than simply an enjoyable time for families and viewers of all ages to spend together at the movies. It’s charming, fun, cute, and pleasant, and not much more. But it doesn’t need to be.
© Matt Tory, 2014.