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CATHERINE KRUMMEY: 'Sisters' a low point for Fey and Poehler

Tina Fey and Amy Poehler have cultivated a sister-like relationship on- and off-screen for the last couple of decades, so it seems fitting for them to finally play them in the movie "Sisters."...

Amy Poehler and Tina Fey star in "Sisters," now playing in theaters. (Universal Pictures)
Amy Poehler and Tina Fey star in "Sisters," now playing in theaters. (Universal Pictures)

Tina Fey and Amy Poehler have cultivated a sister-like relationship on- and off-screen for the last couple of decades, so it seems fitting for them to finally play them in the movie "Sisters."

If you're a fan of these two ladies, who got their big breaks on "Saturday Night Live" before going on to headline their own sitcoms, "30 Rock" (Fey) and "Parks and Recreation" (Poehler), chances are you'll find parts of "Sisters" to be absolutely hilarious.

That said, if it were any other two actresses filling the roles of Kate and Maura Ellis, "Sisters" might not be anywhere near as funny.

The basic premise finds the two sisters back at their childhood home to clear out their stuff before their parents sell it. They come up with the idea to have one last party before the house isn't theirs anymore.

The rest of the cast is filled out by Ike Barinholtz as a love interest for Maura, James Brolin and Dianne Wiest as Kate and Maura's parents, John Leguizamo as a former flame of Kate's and a bevy of current and former "SNL" cast members, including Maya Rudolph, Rachel Dratch, Bobby Moynihan and Kate McKinnon. John Cena also pops up, more or less playing the same meathead he did earlier this year in "Trainwreck."

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None of the supporting actors really leave an impression, and most of their best moments are unfortunately showcased in the film's trailer.

The biggest problem I find with this movie is it's trying too hard-especially in going for full R-rated raunchiness and physical comedy. Fey and Poehler are at their best when they're being witty, not when they're awkwardly trying to scale a rock wall or falling through a poorly constructed ceiling.

I appreciate them both trying to go a little edgier after their sitcoms wrapped up, but most of the movie feels very forced, and the leap from Liz Lemon and Leslie Knope to these two trainwrecks stumbles and falls.

To be clear, "Sisters" is not all bad. The chemistry between Fey and Poehler is still there, and there are a few laugh-out-loud moments to enjoy.

But if you're expecting anything more than that or more like these two funny ladies' sitcom work, you will be disappointed.

 

SISTERS

Two-and-a-half stars out of five.

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Time: 1:58

MPAA rating: R for crude sexual content and language throughout and drug use

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