Aw, listen to us — we sound like ‘The Sopranos,'” laments one character just moments into “Face to Face.” Unfortunately, that analysis holds for the remaining 80-odd minutes. Starring and co-written by ’70s teen heartthrob Scott Baio, low-budget comedy about three chips off the old Jersey block trying to bond with their retro-macho Italian-American dads has its heart in the right place — but everything else is trite, broad, schmaltzy and/or second-hand. Cable and cassette markets are signaled.
A grandfather’s death makes earnest Richie Gallo (Baio) aware that he’s never really gotten close to his own hard-driving, ulcerous, emotionally remote pa Jimmy (Dean Stockwell, chewing scenery). He persuades two cousins, womanizing Philly (Thomas Calabro) and dim-bulb divorcee Al (Carlo Imperato), that they, too, must bridge the paternal communication gap with their fathers (Alex Rocco and Joe Viterelli, respectively) before it’s too late. With a little help from their stereotypically meddling, pasta-cooking mamas, younger trio “kidnap” the elders for a weekend in the country. Predictable comic mishaps and incessant yelling ensue before a convenient crisis spurs warm reconciliations all around. Routinely penned, staged and synth-scored, pic never rises above sitcom-style yuks and pat sentiment.