The long anticipated remake of the Steve Martin-led Cheaper by the Dozen is here. In the Disney+ original movie, the story follows the organized chaos of a blended family of 12, the Bakers. The family tries to balance a hectic home life while simultaneously managing their family business. Gabrielle Union and Zach Braff star as the parents, an interracial couple who also have to keep their children informed of racial and social challenges.
The film also stars Erika Christensen, Timon Kyle Durrett, Journee Brown, Kylie Rogers, Andre Robinson, Caylee Blosenski, Aryan Simhadri, Leo Abelo Perry, Mykal-Michelle Harris, Christian Cote, Sebastian Cote and Luke Prael.
For Union, she told Shadow and Act that she was attracted to this specific project because she relates closely to her character and the blended family. Union is married to NBA champion, Dwayne Wade, and is a stepmother to his two children and nephew from a previous relationship. They also have a daughter, Kaavia.
"The Bakers are not unlike the Wades..like we are a blended family," Union said in her chat with S&A. "It is a traveling circus most of the time. But I rarely get to see families [on-screen] like ours and my extended family, where an aunt might come live with you, a cousin, grandma...everyone's kind of together. Usually, we shame those families as if something has gone wrong. You know what I mean?"
Social media users haven't been afraid to share their reactions, with most of them highlighting the positive lessons imparted, but there are some critics.
Leave race out of it
Sometimes I wish they would leave social and racial issues out of fun loving movies. The Disney cheaper by the dozen remake had some funny moments but dang can we laugh without having to think about race? Omg pick a plot. #CheaperbytheDozen pic.twitter.com/pSI7G3SeQj— 🦋🦋 (@amanda2saint) March 19, 2022
While some enjoyed the conversations surrounding race, others preferred to keep it light. Many watch Disney's family movies as a form of escapism and would rather not have to be reminded of the injustices of the world.prevnext
Some notable moments
This movie was surprisingly good. I had to see how they gonna remake the Steve Martin classic. They made it different and made it their own. Plus I love how they explored race. I give it a 8/10. #CheaperbytheDozen pic.twitter.com/5SGMz9S6vo— LEEFONTAINE (@LEEFONTAINE404) March 19, 2022
In order for this film to be received well, there had to be major differences with the same underlying theme from the original. This user thinks they succeeded.prevnext
Subpar at best
#CheaperbytheDozen is a perfectly adequate yet entirely unremarkable modern update. It's completely harmless, very mildly amusing and has its heart in the right place. Zach Braff & Gabrielle Union make a fine pair. You get pretty much what you're probably expecting from this. pic.twitter.com/EXQCPCjIRI— Will Martinez (@willmovies) March 22, 2022
One user didn't think the movie was that great. But they did enjoy Union and Braff's performances.prevnext
Takeaways from the movie
#CheaperbytheDozen highlighted some interesting topics:— SHAKE (@frieswdatSHAKE) March 19, 2022
2. Moving Black children to a "better neighborhood" and them being profiled
3. Being a "single mom" while married
4. "Selling out" a business idea for a better life
5. Blended families
6. Black fatherhood
7. Step parenthood
This Twitter user used quotation marks to reference things they felt were a paradox explored. Some themes however were better appreciated.prevnext
Loving the inclusivity
I’m in love with @itsgabrielleu and @zachbraff’s rendition of #CheaperbytheDozen for many reasons (it’s sweet, funny, socially aware…) but as a disabled person, what stands out most to me is the disability empowerment found in Harley’s character. Here are my thoughts: pic.twitter.com/LL4hXoMfjR— Scrubs Thought Bubble (Kai/KC) (@ScrubsThoughts) March 19, 2022
Including a character with disabilities stood out for this Twitter user. They can relate due to having their own disability.prevnext
Cheaper By The Dozen is not what I was expecting, but in the best way possible. Yes, it's a comedy that is a whole ton of chaotic fun, but it's also completely unafraid to dive into social & racial issues that are plaguing the world today. Incredibly important. #CheaperByTheDozen pic.twitter.com/0CdjsWIzOg— Tessa Smith – Mama's Geeky (@MamasGeeky) March 17, 2022
One user says the film exceeded their expectations. They appreciated the subject matter explored that many family movies avoid.prev