Review: Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day (2014)

Alexander and the Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Day

Genuinely entertaining live-action family films are hard to come by these days, which makes Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day a refreshing treat. Alexander (Ed Oxenbould) knows full well what it’s like to have a bad day, but his family don’t have a clue. That is, however, until they all suffer through a terrible, very bad day for themselves. Well pitched and infused with warmth to please audiences of all ages, this big screen adaptation of Judith Viorst’s beloved children’s book balances all-out silliness with humour and heart. The madcap things that happen to the Cooper family often venture into the realm of make-believe, but that doesn’t make them any less funny. The best gags hail from Jennifer Garner and Steve Carell as the parents (Garner, in particular, proves herself a dab hand at comedy), yet the whole cast – including small, yet memorable appearances from Jennifer Coolidge and Megan Mullally – all have their moments to shine. It’s never particularly original, nor would it likely hold up particularly well on rewatches, but Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day is not in any way shape or form as bad as its title suggests. In fact, it’s a funny and breezy family farce that plays to its strengths and never outstays its welcome.

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