Melissa McCarthy Called a “Hippo,” “Tractor-Sized” in Identity Thief Movie Review

Melissa McCarthy in "Identity Thief" Universal Pictures

There's a fine line between criticism and insult — and the New York Observer's film critic crosses it. Writing about Identity Thief, the new comedy starring Jason Bateman and Melissa McCarthy, veteran movie reviewer Rex Reed not only trashes the flick but also attacks its female lead on a very personal level.

In the scathing write-up, Reed calls McCarthy "cacophonous" and "tractor-sized" — "a gimmick comedian who has devoted her short career to being obese and obnoxious with equal success." He also refers to her character in the "chunk of junk" flick as Bateman's "female hippo" and a "screeching, humongous creep."

The comments about the Mike & Molly star's size are a low blow, especially considering that the 42-year-old actress has been so candid in the past about her struggle to lose weight and accept her curves. Speaking to Good Housekeeping in November 2012, the Bridesmaids actress said: "I don't really know why I'm not thinner than I am. I don't really drink soda, I don't have a sweet tooth, and we eat healthfully at home." (She also regularly plays tennis and does Pilates.)

"Sometimes I wish I were just magically a size 6 and I never had to give it a single thought," the Emmy winner told the mag. "But I am weirdly healthy, so I don't beat myself up about it — it wouldn't help, and I don't want to pass that on to my girls." (McCarthy and her husband, actor Ben Falcone, are parents to daughters Vivian, 5, and Georgette, 2.)

"You just have to say, 'It's pretty damn good. I am right here at the moment and I'm okay with it,'" she said of her body image. "I've got other things to think about."

Sign up now for the Us Weekly newsletter to get breaking celebrity news, hot pics and more delivered straight to your inbox!

Want stories like these delivered straight to your phone? Download the Us Weekly iPhone app now!

Close popup

Welcome to In Motion

Bring photos to life with Us Weekly's exciting new mobile experience!

What's In Motion? Tell me more

What's In Motion?

Go back

How to Use In Motion

What's In Motion? Tell me more