Life of the Party

Rated 2.0

A middle-aged housewife (Melissa McCarthy), suddenly dumped by her husband, decides to go back to school and finish her degree, to the horror of her college-bound daughter. The latest laughless dud from McCarthy and husband Ben Falcone (she stars, he directs, they both write) takes its place beside predecessors Tammy (2014) and The Boss (2016), the two worst pictures of McCarthy’s career. Now there are three. The story is inconsistent from one scene to the next—sometimes from one shot to the next—with nearly every scene looking desperately improvised, falling flat, and left in for the sake of filling out the running time. It’s all Melissa all the time; nobody else gets even a sliver of the limelight. A vanity production sure enough—but whose vanity is being catered to, McCarthy’s or Falcone’s?