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Don't waste money on these fockers

LITTLE FOCKERS Comedy; Starring Ben Stiller and Robert De Niro >BY MARK EVANS

COMING out next week in the video stores, I'll save you the bother and say don't bother.

It's no dud, but coming after the hilarious Meet the Parents and the pretty OK Meet the Fockers, Little Fockers is a focking disappointment.

Five years on from the sequel, nurse Greg (Ben Stiller) and his wife Pam (Teri Polo) are the worn-out parents of high-maintenance five-year-old twins Henry and Samantha.

Of course, the shadow of overbearing dad-in-law Jack (Robert De Niro) still looms large. Even more so when Jack Byrnes, who's got heart problems, makes Greg the future head of the family -- the "Godfocker" -- after his other son-in-law, Dr Bob, cheats on daughter Debbie.

But Greg, whose own marriage has turned a bit dull, has his own hands full with relationship problems, and sexy drugs company rep Andi Garcia (the lovely Jessica Alba) is sniffing around, looking for an affair.

Soon Jack is back at war with Greg, suspecting him of getting a bit handy with Andi.

For a movie that had a 12s cert in the cinema, it's not really one for the kids.

And scenes about betrayal, and one involving Jack getting an injection into his private parts after taking an erectile dysfunction drug are a bit too close to the bone. Even for adults, the laughs are few and far between.

Owen Wilson reprises his role as Pam's pining ex-lover, and gets far too much screen time considering the lines he's been given.

Dustin Hoffman and Barbra Streisand are back too as Greg's parents, but again the dialogue isn't snappy enough to suit their talents.

After a while it feels like one of those TV comedies that's outstayed its welcome and run out of ideas.

Just average, which is about as damning as you can get, given the array of talent on screen here.

DVD EXTRAS: Deleted scenes, alternate beginning and ending and a making-of special.


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