Melissa McCarthy has become one of the most significant breakout comedy stars over the last five years. In television, we have her Emmy-winning work on Mike & Molly; in the movies it’s a sequence of increasingly higher-profile supporting or co-starring roles in R-rated comedies, from Bridesmaids to Identity Thief to The Heat. Now she has her first solo lead role in Tammy, directed by her husband Ben Falcone, with whom McCarthy co-wrote the script. But while it’s some decently funny stuff, I find myself wishing that McCarthy could get a wider (sorry) selection of material than two variations on the same basic idea.

Tammy is a midwestern, wrong-kind-of-white-people answer to the schlemiel. Circumstances and her own blithe idiocy conspire to never let things turn out in her favor. While rooting around in her beat-up Corolla one day, she runs into a deer. This makes her late for…

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