Critics Dump on ‘Dirty Grandpa': 8 Worst Reviews for Raunchy Zac Efron, Robert De Niro Comedy

“Robert De Niro masturbating in a reclining chair is, along with all of ‘Dirty Grandpa,’ a punishment,” one review reads

“Dirty Grandpa” critics have a few more unflattering adjectives to describe Robert De Niro‘s latest comedy: “awful,” “progressively unwatchable,” “desperately unfunny” and “depressing.”

The new raunchy R-rated comedy co-starring Zac Efron currently has a dismal nine percent approval rating from critics counted on Rotten Tomatoes, with only two critics writing positive reviews at the time of this publishing.

And even the positive reviews aren’t all that positive. Julian Roman from Black Film wrote, “Imagine the most crass teen sex comedy redux with a more perverted old man. It’s a barrel of laughs, just the bottom of the barrel.”

Matt Pais from Red Eye also pseudo-praised the film when he wrote, “Through it all, though, is a mix of laughs and guffaws and snorts that neither makes you proud of yourself nor makes you regret giving this fluff a shot.”

After that, things get ugly. Here are eight of the worst reviews available at the moment.

Inkoo Kang of TheWrap:

“Many of the gags land close enough to entertainment that I kept anticipating the next one to work. But by the time Aubrey Plaza‘s college-student character urges De Niro’s septuagenarian to ‘tsunami on [her] face’ — you know, from his penis — I lost all hope.”

Glenn Kenny of RogerEbert.com:

“The fact that the relentless barrage of this humor is occasionally punctuated with pointedly insincere homilies wherein ‘dirty’ grandpa De Niro tries to encourage sellout grandson Efron to Follow His Dreams just makes the whole thing that more depressing.”

Daniel M. Kimmel of New England Movies Weekly:

“The distributors of this cinematic crime is Lionsgate. Aware of just how awful the film is and yet wanting to fleece the public nonetheless, they demanded that film critics attending an advance screening agree to an embargo. That’s not unusual except for this: public showings begin Thursday night. The embargo for print reviews (although not online reviews) is Saturday, which just happens to be lowest circulation paper of the week.”

David Nusair of Reel Film Reviews:

Robert De Niro‘s efforts to completely obliterate his once-sterling cinematic reputation continue with ‘Dirty Grandpa,’ as the progressively unwatchable movie forces the venerable actor into one cringe-worthy and desperately unfunny scenario after another.”

Peter Howell of The Toronto Star:

“It’s as if director Dan Mazer, who shared writing credits for Sacha Baron Cohen‘s ‘Borat’ and ‘Brüno,’ and screenwriter John Phillips (the upcoming ‘Bad Santa 2’) were playing a game of ‘bet you De Niro won’t do this!'”

Kate Taylor of Globe and Mail:

“It’s the direction, not the script, that really kills the picture, as Mazer limps along from the chugging contest to the half-naked conga line to the car chase without ever raising the laughs he needs from the comic set pieces or the tension he needs from the dramatic developments.”

Mike Ryan of Uproxx:

Robert De Niro masturbating in a reclining chair is, along with all of ‘Dirty Grandpa,’ a punishment. It’s representing the punishment we all deserve for society’s masturbational ills. I just know that’s what director Dan Mazer is trying to tell us, because, otherwise, no filmmaker could be this cruel.”

Stephen Whitty of the Newark Star-Ledger:

“Instead of developing anything in any interesting way, the movie just keeps repeating the same gags – mostly De Niro saying something filthy or Efron getting arrested. Most of the people they meet – crooked cops, stupid jocks, a crazed drug dealer, gangstas – wouldn’t qualify for a ‘Saturday Night Live’ sketch.”