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"Cheaper By the Dozen", based on the real-life story of the Gilbreth family, follows them from Providence, Rhode Island to Montclair, New Jersey, and details the amusing anecdotes found in ... See full summary »
The Bakers, a family of 14, move from small-town Illinois to the big city after Tom Baker gets his dream job to coach his alma mater's football team. Meanwhile, his wife also gets her dream of getting her book published. While she's away promoting the book, Tom has a hard time keeping the house in order while at the same time coaching his football team, as the once happy family starts falling apart. Written by
From oldest child to youngest child, the list of kids is: Nora (23), Charlie (17/18), Lorraine (14), Henry (12), Sarah (11), Jake (10), Mark (9), Jessica (7), Kim (7), Mike (6), Kyle (5), Nigel (5). In reality, Jacob Smith (Jake Baker) is 3 years older than Alyson Stoner, who plays his older sister Sarah Baker. As well, Morgan York (Kim Baker) is the same age as Alyson Stoner, and Forrest Landis, Blake Woodruff, and Liliana Mumy are all the same age when their characters are a year difference at least. See more »
In the moving scene, the van has the parents, the dog, and 10 kids in it. The actual model of the van looks like it doesn't seat that many people. See more »
Mom's parenting skills consist of having all the kids get into the bed with her like puppies. Indeed, when she goes away on tour and has to stay in a hotel, she rings up room service for a dozen pillows in order to get to sleep! Similarly, Dad's parenting skills amount to letting the kids do whatever they please, so the story is not about two parents with twelve children, but rather fourteen children, of which two are somewhat older. There is no structure to this family, and hence when Mom and Dad become distracted by new career choices, it starts breaking down rapidly into anarchy and chaos. The problem isn't the number of children or the new career choices, but that the parents have not provided a family structure sufficient to support any changes in direction or growth.
In short, the story misrepresents a poor example of parenting as though it was a good example, manipulating the audience with feel-good sentimentality at every turn, so that we will not notice how messed up and dysfunctional this family actually is. We are supposed to laugh at all their craziness and antics, the chandelier crashing from the ceiling, the kids slipping on vomit, the frog splattering breakfast on everyone, and so forth, and then feel good in the end, when love conquers all, and they return to the simpler life where they started. In other words, this is just mindless nonsense promoting stupidity and childish values. It has nothing in common with the 1950 film from which it takes its title.
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