I was once REALLY into Adam Sandler movies. I have fond memories of watching Big Daddy MANY times. I’ve always admired his inclusion of pals in movies. It feels genuine, like they are there just for fun and joined the ride without any hesitation. He also seems like a really nice, approachable guy (not that I ever would if I ever saw him), especially after hearing him on Howard Stern recently.
The man has made a TON of money cranking out movies that almost always rub critics the wrong way but amass box office sales much greater than the movie budgets. An often overlooked facet to Sandler’s success is his international appeal. So it makes sense that he shacked up with Netflix. They’ve conquered North and South America, crept into Europe, and are starting to cover Asia, so gambling on Sandler to release not just one but FOUR titles might just make sense. But what happens when you have all the freedoms granted by a production under Netflix under your belt?
Let’s discuss the obvious. I am a new dad that has limited time. I highly doubt my wife would have invested 2 hours watching this movie with me. I just let curiosity get the best of me. The bar for a western comedy had been dropped below sea level from A Million Ways to Die in the West so I figured it could only go up, right? Well…..
The good; this movie is a logistical marvel. I know Adam Sandler has lots of friends, but this movie’s call sheet is amazing. Even though we’re aware most of the cast probably never met during production, it’s still almost like watching a special episode of Saturday Night Live where familiar faces just keep showing up. Even if a fraction of each actors’ fan base tuned in, Netflix should consider this a release a hit. Maybe not Oscar winners, but definitely far above extras and just as you’d expect some deliver lines better than others.
Authentic or not, some of the shots are beautiful and it’s crazy to think that this movie is also available in 4K.
The bad; let’s just say you’ll be okay to sip any hot drinks or balance heavy objects while watching this movie. The laughs are seldom and short lived. One of my favorites was the account of Abe Lincoln’s assassination.
The elephant in the room, not-so-subtle racist jokes, also won’t go away. There are moments when I really cringed and production wasn’t a walk in the park either. This is definitely not the kind of movie you should share with an ignorant friend who needs fodder for low brow jokes. It’s interesting to think what DIDN’T get executive approval during editing or how the dialog translates overseas.
Overall, look, you don’t have to spend any money to watch this. You just have to endure a couple of hours to catch a few chuckles and wonder what listens Sandler will learn for his next title. This probably isn’t the best title to break in your new 4K TV.
I want Adam Sandler to do another serious movie like Punch Drunk Love. I also want studios to make less reboots, less mas gun shootings, and my hair to grow back. Unfortunately, none of these seem like realistic wishes at the moment.
And sure… I might watch the next Sandler movie because I STILL like the guy.