After this film was made, Melissa McCarthy lost 45 lbs. on a diet that is low in carbs and high in protein. Nevertheless, we loved you in this movie, Melissa; your extra weight just added to your charm.
I do believe that Tammy (played by Melissa) is a character that we are all familiar with in our daily lives. But Tammy does carry it to extremes just a wee bit. Because she hit a deer on the way to work at Topper Jack’s, a fast food restaurant, she walked in late to a job that she hates, and was fired on the spot by a boss she did not care for anyway. She shows her anger by messing with the hamburgers, and one of them ended up on the picture of her boss on the wall. As if that is not enough trouble for one day, she returned home to find that her husband Greg, believing that she will not be home for several hours, has just made breakfast for a neighbor lady. She noted to herself that Greg (Nat Faxon) has never made breakfast for her.
What else can she do except walk down to her mother’s house at the end of the block to inform her mother and her grandmother Pearl (played by Susan Sarandon) that she is leaving for Niagara Falls and needs to take Pearl’s car for the trip. Pearl wants to go along, and because she has a lot of cash, Tammy reluctantly takes her along.
It seems, however, that Pearl has diabetes and should not indulge in alcoholic drinks, which of course she ignores most of the time. Their frequent stops at bars along the way introduces both Pearl and Tammy to males who take an interest in them.
Tammy’s luck seems to have changed, because Bobby, the fellow she has met, is quite good looking and respectable, and seems to take an interest in Tammy. Unfortunately, Pearl teams up with Bobby’s father Earl, who seems to have one lascivious thought in mind - to get Pearl to join him in the back of his car. To Tammy’s dismay, Pearl does not seem to mind the high-jinks.
The next morning, Tammy and Pearl are taken to jail because Pearl has been found with illegal prescription drugs. When Tammy is released, her only remedy is to rob a nearby Topper Jack’s to finance the bail to get Pearl out of jail.
Only Melissa McCarthy could pull these stunts off and make them believable. But there is more. Each incident, of itself, is something that could happen to anyone. Combined, however, the episodes make a splendid vehicle for Melissa to strut her stuff. Something about her persona brings out the empathy of the viewer, and we pull for her in every inglorious situation.
Melissa’s wardrobe is a piece of work, but it is all too familiar to us when we walk the aisles of certain supermarkets in our own neighborhood. When Bobby shows up again towards the end of the film, Melissa at least knows enough to improve on her hairstyle as well as her duds, and actually presents a pretty picture.
We can only presume the happy ending we want for Tammy, and Pearl surprisingly is enchanted with her new quarters in an assisted living facility. I think it is necessary to see this film twice to catch all of the wisecracks and mutterings that Tammy and Pearl exchange throughout their adventure. I’m not sure Roger Ebert would give it two thumbs up, but I, for one, thoroughly enjoyed Tammy’s antics.
I live in a suburb of Buffalo, which is close to Niagara Falls, and the media gave these two girls a lot of publicity when they actually came to the Falls to shoot their scenes there. They are both very much loved celebrities.
Melissa, please do not lose any more weight; there is a market for the likes of you, and not many actresses are willing or able to fall into such a character with the aplomb that you seem to exhibit.