The Out-Laws: The New Happy Madison Comedy Launches On Netflix

(L to R) Pierce Brosnan as Billy, Adam DeVine as Owen, Ellen Barkin as Lilly, Nina Dobrev as Parker in The Out-Laws. Photo credit: Scott Yamano/Netflix © 2023.

The Out-Laws is the newest comedy film to be launched by Adam Sandler’s production company, Happy Madison, on Netflix.

I found myself laughing a number of times while watching the press screener in my apartment. There’s a part of me that wonders just how many more laughs there would be in a shared communal setting. It’s so hard launching a comedy in theaters these days. People will watch Joy Ride if they’re going out this weekend. If they staying home, audiences will probably check out The Out-Laws out of curiosity. With this cast and Sandler’s company behind it, why wouldn’t they? An action comedy on Meet the Parents may sound a bit on the absurd side but it sure beats a rom-com where someone falls for the person who catfished them. But hey, I’m here for anything that lets me see Pierce Brosnan starring in an action comedy!

The gist of the film is that bank manager Owen Browning (Adam Devine) is about to marry Parker (Nina Dobrev). Owen recently found out that Parker’s parents, Billy (Pierce Brosnan) and Lilly (Ellen Barkin) will be in town for their wedding. Anyway, he’s at work when the Ghost Bandits hold up the bank. There’s something about their behavior which leads Owen to believe that his future in-laws are really the Out-Laws. He doesn’t tell Parker any of this information. It makes you wonder if they were really in South America. Anyway, what’s going to happen when Parker’s parents meets Owen’s parents, Neil (Richard Kind) and Margie (Julie Hagerty)? The comedy just writes itself in this situation. Hell, you even have Adam Devine dressed like Shrek at one point in the film!

This is definitely one of the more interesting takes on the premise. I certainly have not seen any films like it. How often is that we someone about to get married in a movie and then they learn their future in-laws are bank robbers? It offers a fun premise with some fun set pieces and I wish Netflix would have let us see it in a theater. According to the Netflix press site, there was a theatrical release in select theaters. Comedies play so much better in theaters than watching solo. Laughter is contagious in a shared communal setting and I cannot stress this enough. Meanwhile, there’s a lot of action here and director Tyler Spindel handles it quite well. And again, we have Pierce Brosnan doing comedy. Studios, I beg of you to please have Pierce Brosnan star in more comedies!

The Out-Laws is a fun riff on the Meet the Parents concept and lets James Bond’s Pierce Brosnan show off his comedy chops.

DIRECTOR: Tyler Spindel
SCREENWRITERS: Ben Zazove & Evan Turner
CAST: Adam Devine, Nina Dobrev, Michael Rooker, Poorna Jagannathan, Julie Hagerty, Richard Kind, Lil Rel Howery, Blake Anderson, Lauren Lapkus, Laci Mosley, with Ellen Barkin and Pierce Brosnan

Netflix releases The Out-Laws globally on July 7, 2023. Grade: 3.5/5

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Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.