Review: De Niro, Pfeiffer shine in flawed ‘Family’

September 12, 2013 • Entertainment

This film publicity image released by Relativity Media shows Robert DeNiro in “The Family.” (AP Photo/Relativity Media, Jessica Forde)

Talk about a promising duo for a dark mob comedy: Robert De Niro, whose mob-film pedigree needs no explanation, and Michelle Pfeiffer, who was, after all, “Married to the Mob.”

Happily, these two more than carry their weight as husband and wife in director/co-writer Luc Besson’s new film “The Family.”

Less happily, it’s not enough to save this oddly paced, overly violent, sometimes amusing but sometimes jarringly unfunny movie.

De Niro is Giovanni Manzoni, an ex-mob boss from Brooklyn who’s snitched on his former cohorts and must disappear fast, along with his wife and two kids. Newly named the Blakes, they set up in a picturesque Normandy village (is there any other kind?)

There, Fred, Maggie and kids Belle and Warren try to assimilate. They’re not too great at it, since they have varying anger management issues.

On the other hand, they’re helped by the fact that, Login to read more

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