The prospect of Robin Williams, Jeff Daniels and 'Get Shorty' director Barry Sonnenfeld teaming up for a family comedy does sound like a combination that would pass the time on a do-nothing afternoon. But when it comes to 'RV', you'd get more fun out of going camping with a bin liner as your tent.
Dumped on by his boss from ever greater heights, and facing the challenge of a new young executive, Bob Munro (Williams) is instructed to cancel his family holiday to Hawaii so that he can attend a merger pitch involving a juice company in Colorado. Knowing that the holiday is one of his big chances to connect with daughter Cassie (JoJo) and son Carl (Hutcherson), Bob concocts a story about how it would be much more fun to take a camper van from California to Colorado. But while Bob may be very good at his job, once outside the office all intelligence deserts him, and for his family-turned-passengers it's going to be a very long ride - especially when they meet wandering minstrel Travis Gornicke (Daniels) and his clan along the way.
How Williams read the script for this and signed on the dotted line is a better mystery than most of what passes as thrillers in cinemas these days. While younger viewers might get a few guffaws out of the toilet jokes and slapstick, anyone else will come away thinking that comedy writing in Hollywood has gone beyond crisis point. Chalk-and-cheese pairings are more predictable than Rolling Stones setlists and the best route 'RV' and its cast could've taken was straight-to-video.
The film's message, by the way, is don't rush to judgement. In this case, do.