Instant Family is a comedy drama film directed by Sean Anders. The film follows a couple, Pete, and Ellie, (Mark Wahlberg and Rose Byrne), who decide to adopt three kids. The film follows the life of the new family and explores what the word family really means.
Right off the bat I will say that you have seen this before, the storyline has been mined for all it is worth and you know exactly what is coming right from the first minute: it is insanely predictable. However, despite this the film still manages to nail its core emotional beats and as such you become invested in the story and the lives of these characters: the final showdown in the court room is rather moving.
You can see that Wahlberg is struggling to deviate from his tough guy persona here, unlike Byrne he struggles more with the emotional scenes and is less believable as a result. However, he does have a few good moments that warm the heart, such as the scene he scares with teenage wild card Lizzy (Isabela Moner), when they smash things up together.
With that in mind I would say Moner is the star of the show here, she nails both the comedy and the heart and hers is the character that feels the most realised and explored. Moner brings more to the role that just the usual teenage moodiness and actually makes the character compelling, even managing to upstage Wahlberg and Byrne at times.
Overall, though this film is nothing new its huge heart is enough to win you over.
Wahlberg feels out of place
It is very obvious and predictable
Reviewed by Luke