A cross between Meet The Parents, National Lampoon's European Vacation and a generic New York gangster film.
Mildly amusing in places, with some nifty set-pieces and clever editing, hampered by a scattergun script and an uneven tone. Is it a comedy? Is it a drama? Is it a shoot-em-up? It's all three, yet none at the same time.
From what I can gather, most mainstream critics have panned it. However, I think they've been unduly cruel. It's not terrible, it just misfires.
De Niro is in fine curmudgeonly form as the head of the family in question, doing his usual gurning and squinting - mostly to comedic effect. The delectable Michelle Pfeiffer is the personification of Jackie Frost as his world weary wife. And the two actors playing their cartoon character children rise to the challenge with gleeful relish.
Unfortunately, the tone and style lurches from one mood and genre to another so fast and so often that it takes the shine off much that is good about the film.
I won't spoil the ending, even though it's pretty much signposted from the beginning, but let's just say: methinks a sequel is a distinct possibility.
A kooky princess gets over-animated over a goofy himbo, a shape-shifting snowman melts your heart, 3D visual effects have no effect whatsoever and I am getting a wee bit long in the amalgams for such happy clappy-ness.
Which is pity, because it starts off so well with a breath-taking scene in the university library in which the magnetic Dane DeHann as Lucien Carr jumps on top of a large oak table and recites poetry whilst straddling a regal table lamp - much to the horror of freshmen students and staid academics.
Thereafter, however, despite a few flashes of brilliance (including a wonderful slow motion sequence in a smoky jazz club), it all gets a bit hazy. A lot is alluded to - drugs, drink and wild debauchery - but not much is shown and that which is feels safe, conservative and contained.
On the acting front, Daniel Radcliffe is perfectly cast as the wide-eyed Allen Ginsberg and turns in probably his best screen performance to date. However the film belongs to DeHann who captures the seductiveness, danger and pain of Lucien Carr to a tee.
It's not a must-see, more a go-and-see If you're feeling footloose and fancy free, Possess a penchant for beat poetry, Pretty faces and witty repartee.