Every decade or so we get a fun new update to an old story we’re all familiar with. This time, it’s Cheaper By The Dozen. The first version, based on the true story, was released in the 1950s. Then, in 2003, we were given a hilarious family comedy starring Steve Martin (Only Murders in the Building) and Bonnie Hunt (The Green Mile). Now, we meet the Baker family headed up by Zach Braff (Scrubs) and Gabrielle Union (LA’s Finest).
CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN FOR 2022
The Bakers are a blended and multi-racial family who are as loving as they are rambunctious. Paul Baker (Braff) is a chef who owns and operates a breakfast-only restaurant with the help of his wife and family. Paul has invented a magical sauce that is perfect with anything you eat. He dreams of selling it in stores across America in order to provide the life he feels his family deserves. However, as we learn throughout the film, the grass is not always greener.
FANTASTIC STORY AND COMMENTARY
When Paul gets his dream, he doesn’t realize how it affects his family through his rose-colored glasses. The Bakers pack up their family and move from a blue-collar, middle-class neighborhood to an uppity, rich neighborhood. The kids get a crash course in nepotism, bullying, racism, and more.
While I appreciate that Cheaper By The Dozen shows you how your decision as parents truly affects their lives, I also like that the struggle was seen through their parents as well. Zoe (Union) deals with microaggressions from her new neighbors, the security guard in their neighborhood, and more. Paul deals with his own insecurities and enoughness.
HOW TO EMBRACE THE LESSON
Kenya Barris, the man behind sitcoms Black-ish, Grown-ish, and Mixed-ish, helps to write a script in a way that allows for these “hot button” topics to be digestible and not seen as attacks. It also shows the best ways to handle these moments in life. So, it’s lessons all around.
I enjoyed the story, the acting from adults and all the incredible children are great. My only issue with the film is the runtime coming in at just under 2 hours. By shaving off maybe 10 minutes, the movie could be even better without tiny lulls throughout.
Make sure to catch Cheaper By The Dozen on March 18th only on Disney+! And stay tuned to THS for more reviews and news!