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June 19, 2012 10:43 AM   Subscribe

Adam Sandler's House of Cruelty Now in his forties, Sandler is still remaking the same undemanding goofball comedies he's been churning out since he was in his twenties, about crude, infantile characters who behave like crude, infantile characters who are much younger -- which is the essence of the have-it-both-ways regression that has been his career hallmark.
posted by Christ, what an asshole (179 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
Has someone told Sandler that he doesn't * Have* to make make movies? Or is this a kind deal with Satanironic twist thing " so you want to make movies? Then why not make movies forever! AHAHAHAHAHAHAH!"
posted by The Whelk at 10:51 AM on June 19, 2012 [13 favorites]


To date I've somehow caught the same brief stretch of Happy Gilmore several times when channel flipping. It seems to involve golf carts and vaguely early-1980s-looking old people in realtor blazers. I have managed never to see any other part of any other Sandler film and am content to keep it that way.
posted by George_Spiggott at 10:58 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Eponysterical... !

But in the end, outside of personal growth of development as a human being, what impetus does he have to change the formula? It sells, sadly enough; it sells.
posted by cavalier at 10:58 AM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


Red Letter Media makes the point that Sandler is a fraud.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 11:00 AM on June 19, 2012 [9 favorites]


I just want to remind everyone to watch Funny People again, especially the second half, which is the best analysis of the comic psychology ever, and therefore extremely painful to watch.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 11:00 AM on June 19, 2012 [20 favorites]


Count the number of ex SNL cast members whose post-SNL careers have have aged gracefully. There's Bill Murray and...
posted by doctor_negative at 11:01 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


It's an interesting quote you chose for the title of this post, because "Billy Madison" is the outlier in his career, in that it is a genuinely funny movie that stands up to multiple viewings.
posted by jbickers at 11:01 AM on June 19, 2012 [7 favorites]


Jim Emerson of Scanners is a great writer on film and other topics. Adam Sandler isn't worthy of his pixels.

Sandler is filming his new commercial, um, movie near where I live. While this benefits some people I know, I wish it were just about any other movie.
posted by Currer Belfry at 11:02 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Is Rob Schneider connected in anyway to this one? I had a theory that Adam Sandler continued to make movies long after he had enough money so that Rob Schneider could continue working and collecting a pay check. I get the feeling that Mr. Schneider is always one pay check away from living on the streets
posted by SugarFreeGum at 11:03 AM on June 19, 2012 [23 favorites]


More interesting Sandler commentary at Grantland.
posted by Aizkolari at 11:04 AM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Adam Sandler can do more than you think.
posted by ZaneJ. at 11:04 AM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


There's Bill Murray and...

... Christopher Guest. And personally I'll give Mike Myers this one as well; we'll allow him a pity pass for Love Guru as long as he doesn't do it again.
posted by George_Spiggott at 11:04 AM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


The only movie of his that I can stand is Punch-Drunk Love. Which is probably his least typical role.
posted by postel's law at 11:06 AM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


So, coincidentally, I saw "That's My Boy" last night.

Now, admittedly, it was at a drive-in (a double feature!) and drive-ins have a way of making bad movies good, but it wasn't completely horrible.

It felt like there was a good movie trapped in there, trying to get out.
Unfortunately, for every good joke, there was a bodily function joke.

And that's sort of the way of Adam Sandler, he seems to be a funny guy, but he's also lazy and quite happy to hire his friends to churn out his formulaic movies every summer.

Also, Vanilla Ice was surprisingly good. It's almost as if "Cool as Ice" never happened...
posted by madajb at 11:07 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


There's Bill Murray and...

Senator Franken's done OK.
posted by Blue Meanie at 11:07 AM on June 19, 2012 [58 favorites]


"Jack and Jill"
Total Lifetime Grosses
Domestic: $74,158,157 (49.5%) + Foreign: $75,515,631 (50.5%) = Worldwide: $149,673,788

"You Don't Mess with the Zohan"
Total Lifetime Grosses
Domestic: $100,018,837 (50.0%) + Foreign: $99,917,174 (50.0%) = Worldwide: $199,936,011

This is he keeps making these movies. They pretty consistently make double the budget in worldwide gross and about half of it comes from outside of the U.S.

Also 2nd'ing that it's so Rob Schneider can continue to get work.
posted by VTX at 11:07 AM on June 19, 2012 [9 favorites]


doctor_negative: " There's Bill Murray and..."

Al Franken's doing ok.
posted by octothorpe at 11:08 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ack, should have previewed.
posted by octothorpe at 11:08 AM on June 19, 2012


I must have really low standards, because I do in fact find most of Sandler's movies enjoyable. Not all of them. And per the article, I found them in my adulthood, not as a teen. Some are huge stinkers, sure. Most are tolerable with some laughs. And some are just plan fun. Don't Mess With The Zohan comes to mind as one of the funnier and surprisingly sweet movies. In fact, I decided that movie forgave all of the stinkers he's done.

Then again, I don't think its a bad thing to make silly, stupid movies that make you smile (and groan). I tried to understand the article linked, but it seemed to come down to "I hate Adam Sandler Movies and now I'm going to try to rationalize it."

Adam Sandler movies fall in the same category for me as Will Farrell and Ben Stiller movies. They have their own brand of humor, and it's going to turn some people off and some people are going to love it. Each movie reaffirms your love or hate for their movies. I enjoy Adam Sandler films (mostly) so I do tend to understand and find the schtick of each one charming in its own crass way.
posted by [insert clever name here] at 11:09 AM on June 19, 2012 [7 favorites]


Can't you complain about this same thing regarding Howard Stern, Jim Carrey, anything by Tyler Perry, Andy Kaufman or any Waynes brother?

I like most of Sandler's films, but I also enjoy some good fart jokes and physical comedy.

The Wedding Singer is one of my favorite go-to films.
posted by zombieApoc at 11:11 AM on June 19, 2012 [5 favorites]


Count the number of ex SNL cast members whose post-SNL careers have have aged gracefully. There's Bill Murray and...

Is it too early to tell with Amy Poehler?
posted by elsietheeel at 11:12 AM on June 19, 2012 [6 favorites]


Billy Madison is the only movie I ever walked out on. Happy Gilmore is one of my favorite movies. You never can tell, I suppose.

Has someone told Sandler that he doesn't * Have* to make make movies?

If you are really good at your job -- like, making lots of money for the boss good -- and you enjoy your job, why stop just because you have enough money to sit around doing nothing all day? That's no way to live, no matter what the critical reaction to your work might be.

see also: Nickelback
posted by davejay at 11:13 AM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]



There's Bill Murray and...

Senator Franken's done OK.


Steve Martin
posted by zombieApoc at 11:14 AM on June 19, 2012 [18 favorites]


Count the number of ex SNL cast members whose post-SNL careers have have aged gracefully. There's Bill Murray and...

No love for Tina Fey?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:14 AM on June 19, 2012 [30 favorites]


Oh yeah, and The Wedding Singer, the Adam Sandler movie that is so good you forget to lump it in with other Adam Sandler movies.
posted by davejay at 11:14 AM on June 19, 2012 [23 favorites]


Oh, good. I've been hating Adam Sandler for twenty years- now I'm finally cool! I had to hear "They're All Gonna Laugh at You!" at every party my junior year of high school. I remember looking at my long term best friend cracking up at Crazy Pickle Mustache Man and wondering what on Earth I was missing. My aunt subjected us to the Hanukkah Song every Christmas for at least five years. And when I was 18, a guy I was dating broke things off because I wouldn't go see "Anger Management" with him.

I suffered through "Spanglish"- I admit, I did enjoy looking at the sandwich that Sandler's character made, but I think that's better attributed to Thomas Keller - and I don't care how good "Punch-Drunk Love" is, I hit my lifetime Sandler limit many moons ago. I really, really don't get him or his egg shaped head.

Plus, he's a Republican. Ugh.
posted by Athene at 11:14 AM on June 19, 2012 [12 favorites]


I dunno. I think we get the crappy movies the box office returns deserve.
posted by smirkette at 11:14 AM on June 19, 2012


"Count the number of ex SNL cast members whose post-SNL careers have have aged gracefully. There's Bill Murray and..."

... and Will Ferrell, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Maya Rudolph, Jimmy Fallon, Dan Aykroyd, Jim Belushi, Chevy Chase, Billy Crystal, Robert Downey, Jr., Tracy Morgan, and Chris Rock?
posted by Alison at 11:14 AM on June 19, 2012 [55 favorites]


Here's the thing, you can't go and be in Punch Drunk Love and Funny People, brutal parodies of your own lazy creative output, and then go and continue to make the things that where made fun of. That's cheating!
posted by The Whelk at 11:15 AM on June 19, 2012 [17 favorites]


Robert Downey Jr., Billy Crystal, Tina Fey...they've all done great work post SNL. Bad argument.

Also: "Zohan" was laugh-out-loud funny. Probably one of the best comedies he's ever done. Shame more people didn't give it a chance.
posted by ColdChef at 11:16 AM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


Is it too early to tell with Amy Poehler?

She's making good with television and animated voiceover work, and obviously Tina Fey is doing what Tina Fey does; I don't think either of them are in any danger of being considered post-SNL flops, not by a long shot.
posted by davejay at 11:16 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Count the number of ex SNL cast members whose post-SNL careers have have aged gracefully. There's Bill Murray and...

Christopher Guest, Al Franken, Jane Curtin, Dan Ackroyd, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Harry Shearer, Chris Rock, Janeane Garofalo, Julia Sweeney, Jimmy Fallon...

Really, I could go on. At length. The savage flameouts of Dennis Miller, Victoria Jackson and Chevy Chase are not the norm here.
posted by mightygodking at 11:17 AM on June 19, 2012 [6 favorites]


Here's the thing, you can't go and be in Punch Drunk Love and Funny People, brutal parodies of your own lazy creative output, and then go and continue to make the things that where made fun of. That's cheating a nice living!
posted by davejay at 11:17 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I don't think you need a deep knowledge of psychology to understand Sandler's motives. Imagine that one day you woke up, you were 35 years old, and someone told you: "Make any movie you want. It doesn't matter what kind of movie it is. Just make it, and you will make millions of dollars from it. The budget is between $50 and $100 million dollars. Good luck!"

Really ask yourself: if those were the parameters, how many of you would go make Tree of Life, and how many would call up your friends and celebrities that you wanted to work with, and say, "hey, wanna hang out and get mad paid for 8 weeks?" Some would choose the Tree of Life path but most people would choose the latter option.

That's not to say that it isn't Sandler's fault that he keeps making shitty movies (well, allegedly shitty - I've never actually seen one of his films besides Punch Drunk Love). But I totally understand why he does. The only negative repercussions to the films he makes is that critics write about how dumb they are. As evidenced by his collaborations with Apatow and Anderson, it's not like actually talented people don't want to work with him. So, he has the best of all possible words. Friends get paid, he enjoys the experience of making the films, he gets mad paid, and every 5 years he works on a truly artistic work.

Also, please don't feel bad for Rob Schneider. I've seen the checks - the guy gets very well paid, consistently.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:17 AM on June 19, 2012 [11 favorites]


Steve Martin

Doesn't count; he achieved significant fame before his work on SNL.
posted by davejay at 11:18 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


The savage flameouts of Dennis Miller, Victoria Jackson and Chevy Chase are not the norm here.

Whoa whoa whoa. Fletch!
posted by DU at 11:18 AM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


He cut a deal with Jon Lovitz in a devil suit.
posted by sourwookie at 11:18 AM on June 19, 2012 [13 favorites]


Twenty five million dollars of a nice living!

I say we force the profits of Adam Sandler movies to fund national arts grants. It's only fair.
posted by The Whelk at 11:18 AM on June 19, 2012 [8 favorites]


how many of you would go make Tree of Life, and how many would call up your friends and celebrities that you wanted to work with, and say, "hey, wanna hang out and get mad paid for 8 weeks?"

Are those the only two choices? I'm not sure I'd even watch either of those for several million dollars.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:21 AM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'm actually a big fan of crude, infantile humor, but with exception of "The Hannukah Song" and Cajun Man, I simply find Sandler really unfunny.
posted by jonmc at 11:21 AM on June 19, 2012


Tree of Life-esque, I should say.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:21 AM on June 19, 2012


The Adam Sandler Artistic Achievement Grant.

Um, maybe a different name.
posted by davejay at 11:21 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


There's Bill Murray and...

Ana Gasteyer and Chris Parnell are doing fine.
posted by drezdn at 11:23 AM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


(Whoops, it wasn't Anger Management, it was Bulletproof that came out when I was 18.)
posted by Athene at 11:25 AM on June 19, 2012


Billy Madison and Happy Gilmore shall always reign, for me, as his most amusing films. Granted, while I haven't seen some of his most recent works (on purpose), those films had a certain degree of out of nowhere humor, like the presence of Steve Buschemi's character in Billy Madison.

Likewise, 51st Dates and the Wedding Singer, which still retain a more subdued version of that humor but otherwise ground the films in more likeable and believable characters, are also amongst his best. The former deals with a push for the juvenile to mature, to grow up and accept certain responsibilities and also showcase the tremendous sacrifices that family members are willing to make for loved ones; the latter, in turn contrasts Sandler's character with a very juvenile-type character. Please, please, finish a trifecta of movies with Barrymore!
posted by Atreides at 11:25 AM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Steve Martin

Doesn't count; he achieved significant fame before his work on SNL.


Also, he was never a cast member. Just a frequent host (Five-Timer's Club!). Alec Baldwin has him beat by one time.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 11:26 AM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


Can't you complain about this same thing regarding Howard Stern, Jim Carrey, anything by Tyler Perry, Andy Kaufman or any Waynes brother?

*spit take*
posted by shakespeherian at 11:26 AM on June 19, 2012 [6 favorites]


Now in his forties, Sandler is still remaking the same undemanding goofball comedies he's been churning out since he was in his twenties, about crude, infantile characters who behave like crude, infantile characters who are much younger

I want to see this movie: Adam Sandler as an aging, rich, infantile chump, who keeps producing and starring in movies about much younger infantile chumps. Think an Adam Sandler-esque version of Save the Tiger.
posted by octobersurprise at 11:26 AM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


What? No love for Little Nicky?
posted by enamon at 11:27 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Is this where I bitch that decent movies aren't given wide release yet this shit is.

I mean seriously, a month after it was "released" and Moonrise Kingdom showed on a whopping 96 screens 2 weekends ago. Focus Features, why make a film if you can't even release it to enough screens for people to actually watch it?

How many wide release films have you been to where there isn't another soul in the theater because the movie is just too shitty?
posted by ijoyner at 11:28 AM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Weirdly enough, I went to high school with AS and also delivered newspapers to his parents house.

You could always tell the classes he was in because they would spend most of their time laughing, so he has a genuine talent. As funny as he is in person I can't stand his moves and have never managed to sit through an entire one.

High School yearbook pic here.
posted by Confess, Fletch at 11:28 AM on June 19, 2012 [9 favorites]


My mom took me to see 50 First Dates. We both liked it, despite the insanity of the premise. I actually can't bring myself to hate Adam Sandler. Something about him is endearing to me. All the arm-waving, maybe.
posted by Coatlicue at 11:30 AM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


>>> Waynes brother.

Wayans. Wayans Brother.

As in Keenan Ivory Wayans, the creator of In Living Color.
posted by grabbingsand at 11:30 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I want to see this movie: Adam Sandler as an aging, rich, infantile chump, who keeps producing and starring in movies about much younger infantile chumps.
posted by octobersurprise at 11:26 AM on June 19 [+] [!]


It's called Funny People.
posted by Ndwright at 11:30 AM on June 19, 2012 [14 favorites]


It's gotta be tough to adjust your act as you age. You have this formula that has served you well for years. You want to keep it going. But your body changes and the medium changes and after a while the pieces don't fit together like they used to. What direction do you take, and how many missteps can you afford?

George Burns managed to adapt several times and stay on top. Bob Hope didn't adapt and became a creaky, learing cliche who still raked in millions of bucks. Jerry Lewis changed and lost something along the way. Watching Harry Ritz at 70 trying to act like Harry Ritz at 30 ... it's just painful. Maybe Sandler will wise up and shift into something that can work in middle age. Or maybe he's playing the only tune he knows.
posted by Longtime Listener at 11:31 AM on June 19, 2012


>>> Waynes brother.

Wayans. Wayans Brother.

As in Keenan Ivory Wayans, the creator of In Living Color.


Me spelling the name wrong doesn't change my opinion. All their work after that has been pretty poor. In Living Color also starred one Jim Carrey.
posted by zombieApoc at 11:33 AM on June 19, 2012


"Make any movie you want. It doesn't matter what kind of movie it is. Just make it, and you will make millions of dollars from it. The budget is between $50 and $100 million dollars. Good luck!"

I know I would jump at the chance to work with Kevin James! That man is really very funny!
posted by "Doctor" Terence Malick at 11:33 AM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


"Make any movie you want. It doesn't matter what kind of movie it is. Just make it, and you will make millions of dollars from it. The budget is between $50 and $100 million dollars. Good luck!"

I know I would jump at the chance to work with Kevin James! That man is really very funny!
posted by "Doctor" Terence Malick


Nice try, Terry! We all know you chose instead to make Tree of Life with your buddy Brad!
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:35 AM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Here's the thing, you can't go and be in Punch Drunk Love and Funny People, brutal parodies of your own lazy creative output, and then go and continue to make the things that where made fun of.

Exactly. A lot of hate toward Sandler comes from the fact that he has to know that the bulk of his career has been rubbish--highly remunerative rubbish, granted--yet he keeps on making it. Indeed, it's gotten worse: Since Funny People, it's been one lazy, juvenile film after another, without even the leavening of a sweet rom-com co-starring Drew Barrymore.
posted by Cash4Lead at 11:35 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


What? No love for Little Nicky?

That's the one "typical" Sandler movie I've actually seen, and I can answer categorically: No.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:35 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Wayans. Wayans Brother.

As in Keenan Ivory Wayans, the creator of In Living Color.


For my money the funniest Wayans is the Wayans Son, DWJ.
posted by kmz at 11:37 AM on June 19, 2012 [5 favorites]


Exactly. A lot of hate toward Sandler comes from the fact that he has to know that the bulk of his career has been rubbish--highly remunerative rubbish, granted--yet he keeps on making it. Indeed, it's gotten worse: Since Funny People, it's been one lazy, juvenile film after another, without even the leavening of a sweet rom-com co-starring Drew Barrymore.

Ok, but what's his incentive? Why should he make different films? Right now, he gets to make brainless films with his friends. No stress, no ambition, no risk of failure, just dumb movies that make a bunch of money. The only reasons to stop are 1) the films start losing money or 2) he personally chooses to grow and make more ambitious films.

I just don't get why people are mad at Adam Sandler. Is there some secret amazing groundbreaking film that he has within him that he is denying everyone? If all of his films have been rubbish, then why would you think that?
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:40 AM on June 19, 2012 [8 favorites]


Here's the thing about Adam Sandler: People watch his movies. A lot of people. The man has the ability to shit gold bricks. As godawful as his movies usually are, I really don't blame the guy for continuing to plop them out.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:41 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Is it too early to tell with Amy Poehler?

What has another SNL alum made that's better than Parks & Recreation? She's way ahead as far as I'm concerned.
posted by mullacc at 11:43 AM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


All their work after that has been pretty poor.

Hollywood Shuffle and I'm Gonna Git You Sucka were both pretty funny. But also both before Living Color.
posted by DU at 11:44 AM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


I enjoyed parts of Happy Gilmore. But rather than believe it's because Happy Gilmore is a better movie, I am more inclined to think that Adam Sandler is a one-trick pony and once I have seen the trick, I'm all set. I'm perfectly willing to assume that the rest of his movies are equally good/bad and there isn't much difference between me and somebody who watches Jack and Jill. The difference of opinion is between us and the person who watches all of Sandler's films.
posted by cribcage at 11:45 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


What has another SNL alum made that's better than Parks & Recreation?

Ghostbusters?
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:46 AM on June 19, 2012 [28 favorites]


Eddie Murphy.
posted by Melismata at 11:46 AM on June 19, 2012 [7 favorites]


Here's the thing about Adam Sandler: People watch his movies. A lot of people. The man has the ability to shit gold bricks. As godawful as his movies usually are, I really don't blame the guy for continuing to plop them out.

Adam Sandler movie where he magically gains the ability to literally shit gold bricks in 3..., 2..., 1...
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:47 AM on June 19, 2012 [7 favorites]


I keep wanting to hate this guy. I don't see most of his movies. But Wedding Singer was funny. Punch Drunk Love was great. I liked his old SNL stuff. So I would be a hypocrite to say I hated him. I just only like 10% of what he makes. That's enough to get him a pass from me, so long as I'm not forced to watch the rest. Maybe he is dumbing America down, or maybe he figured out that America liked being dumb. And apparently not just America judging by those overseas numbers.

It's the same way I feel about the Three Stooges; not my thing. Pretty stupid. But something beloved by many, so...shrug.
posted by emjaybee at 11:47 AM on June 19, 2012


Is it too early to tell with Amy Poehler?

See I still think of her as a UCB alum who had a bizarre stint on SNL for some reason, as opposed to an SNL alum.
posted by shakespeherian at 11:47 AM on June 19, 2012 [11 favorites]


Jon Lovitz punched out Andy Dick for trash-talking Phil Hartman after his murder, literally decked him.

I think that and The Critic earns him a passing grade.
posted by Slap*Happy at 11:52 AM on June 19, 2012 [46 favorites]


No matter how highbrow one's taste is in the arts, I think we all have that one guilty pleasure - something that we would have absolutely no ability to really defend on artistic merits but we love unconditionally anyway.

For me, Adam Sandler movies, the goofier and dumber the better (The Waterboy is a personal favorite) are my guilty pleasure (with the caveat that I haven't seen his last few). Eight Crazy Nights is actually by far my favorite holiday movie, which I guess just speaks to my being a sucker for the "guy talking in a really goofy voice" gimmick (and I actually think the music is really good)
posted by The Gooch at 11:54 AM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


I just don't get why people are mad at Adam Sandler. Is there some secret amazing groundbreaking film that he has within him that he is denying everyone? If all of his films have been rubbish, then why would you think that?

But it hasn't all been rubbish, is my point: I liked the movies he did with Drew Barrymore, and especially Funny People and Punch-Drunk Love. I'd rather he did more of that than another iteration of Jack and Jill. He's free, of course, to do what he wants, just as I'm free to make fun of him on an Internet comment board.
posted by Cash4Lead at 11:54 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


The linked article addresses the non-crap movies that Sandler has been in:
As somebody who's never been able to sit through an entire Adam Sandler movie except for the ones that aren't really "Adam Sandler movies" because they were directed by filmmakers who have achieved employment and success independent of him (Paul Thomas Anderson's "Punch-Drunk Love," James L. Brooks' "Spanglish," Judd Apatow's "Funny People"),
posted by kavasa at 11:58 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Maybe what kept Sandler from going back to Punch-Drunk Love type films was how stupid Reign Over Me ended up being.
posted by shakespeherian at 12:02 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Adam Sandler can do more than you think.

No, we know he's capable. He just chooses to make crap most of the time, instead of actually acting and using the talent that he does, apparently, have under the surface.
posted by asnider at 12:03 PM on June 19, 2012


But, but---Mr. Deeds. Gary Cooper spins in his grave every time someone watches that movie.
posted by book 'em dano at 12:04 PM on June 19, 2012


For my money the funniest Wayans is the Wayans Son, DWJ

Hells yeah. I like to think of him as Chris Turk's never-seen brother Jabbari (formerly Bob) gone mainstream.
posted by zombieflanders at 12:04 PM on June 19, 2012


Sandler's Hannukah Song is also a Christmas staple at my house.

Also anyone who thinks Jon Lovitz isn't funny needs to meet me behind the gym for some....FIGHT-hING!
posted by DU at 12:05 PM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


When that movie where he plays both a guy and the guy's ugly twin sister (she's UGLY so it's FUNNY!!!! They talk in funny voices!!!! HA HA HA.) came out, there was a headline of a review somewhere that went:

ADAM SANDLER'S NEW DUMPSTER FIRE

Which is a line so wonderful I almost can't blame him for making the movie that inspired the phrase. When I saw the trailer for JACK AND JILL, the theater was utterly silent. Was this a prank? This was a prank, right? This was like the trailers at the beginning of TROPIC THUNDER, right? And I myself went into a whole mental tailspin where I literally couldn't believe that this was a real movie, it had to be a joke, it had to. The movie tagline was "HIS SISTER IS COMING FOR THE HOLIDAYS... AND IT ISN'T PRETTY!" which also made me think that this was a big joke, and then we'd file into the theater and Adam Sandler would give an angry speech and burn it to the ground.

Anyway. I don't think I dislike Adam Sandler (I really like SPANGLISH, which I think makes me an outlier among humans) but man, he has a specific kind of taste. I feel like pitches for his movies are literally "Hey, let's make a movie about some guys who don't want to grow up because growing up is lame! Also tits, ha ha, tits are funny." and then the money people say "That's amazing." and give him a hundred million dollars.

??? So much confusion.
posted by thehmsbeagle at 12:06 PM on June 19, 2012 [7 favorites]


I sort of disagree with the premise. Outside of Punch Drunk his best movies are Billy Madison and Happy Gilmore. The difference between these movies and his less successful comedies isn't that his other movies are mean spirited or crass or lowest common denominator. The difference is that there's a weird wholesome undercurrent with the angry anti-social stunted characters that he plays. He plays better broader, and frankly crazier.
posted by I Foody at 12:08 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


What I've always found perversely fascinating about Sandler's persona since "SNL" is that the humor itself is based on a bullying attitude, aimed downward from a position of imagined superiority to those who are weaker or have lower social status because of their looks or race or sex or other noticeable difference that, in his view, makes them less than "normal."

I have always disliked Adam Sandler's work. And this quote from the review articulates why. I first started to feel this way a long time ago....when I detected a whiff of homophobia in some of his work. I remember wondering if he was gay....only because he seemed to have so much contempt for homosexuality. I know he denies being homophobic, but his work speaks for itself.
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 12:08 PM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


Given the amount of dough he makes with each movie, I'm sure he has about 500 people encircling him 24-7, telling him how awesome his movies are, and how the world needs more of his stuff.

In any case, I always got the impression he was a nice guy and easy to work with.
posted by The ____ of Justice at 12:09 PM on June 19, 2012


I detected a whiff of homophobia in some of his work.

I think there is more than a whiff of it.
posted by asnider at 12:24 PM on June 19, 2012


The AV Club's review of "That's My Boy" sums up my feelings:
Judd Apatow’s trenchant Funny People should have shamed Adam Sandler off appearing in idiotic, high-concept schlock by casting him as a rich, bored, unmistakably Sandler-like movie star who makes moronic romps because he hates himself and his audience in equal measure. Instead, Sandler has seemingly doubled down on his commitment to pandering to his audience’s crudest instincts, stopping just short of hiring his coterie of writer pals to transform the fake movies his character made in Funny People into genuine Adam Sandler vehicles.
posted by Monster_Zero at 12:24 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Is there any grounding to the implicit accusation that Sandler's movies make more in product placement than they do in ticket sales? Like, is that even possible? Does someone have a sense of what product placement goes for?

The Whelk: "Here's the thing, you can't go and be in Punch Drunk Love and Funny People, brutal parodies of your own lazy creative output, and then go and continue to make the things that where made fun of. That's cheating!"

I don't really think they're parodies. I like this take more:

shakespeherian: "Yeah on a certain level it's just Anderson going 'Well this is a movie that gets made a lot, let's see if I can make it true again.'"

There's a legend that I desperately hope is true. After a critics screening of Punch Drunk Love, Roger Ebert runs up to Adam Sandler, knowing that it may be the only time he'll ever be able to tell him, "I loved your movie." Sandler replies, "Thanks. I'll tell my mom she can start reading your column again."

That's a biting reply, but it's also kind of sweet. It's admitting that Sandler doesn't make movies for Roger Ebert, but it's also admitting that Roger Ebert doesn't write reviews for Adam Sandler's mom. But that doesn't mean that they don't share any common ground, or that either cares less about film than the other.
posted by roll truck roll at 12:25 PM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Sorry to see Andy Samberg and Kevin James dip into the same fetid pool as Sandler
posted by Tullyogallaghan at 12:28 PM on June 19, 2012


I just don't get why people are mad at Adam Sandler.

For me, it's pretty simple -- I see commercials for his movies on the tv, or inadvertantly see a few seconds of his movies on the tv. And the commercials or brief snippets are sufficiently awful that I wish he'd never had any career, just so I wouldn't have to see 10-30 seconds of his crap from time to time.

It's something about their offensively stupid nature combined with the sheer transparency of their calculating make-a-buck cynicism. Why bother doing something good? This crap will sell well enough.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 12:33 PM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Adam Sandler gets paid a lot of money to make the world a dumber place.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 12:36 PM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


What has another SNL alum made that's better than Parks & Recreation?

Ghostbusters?


Fair enough. I knew there was a biggie I wasn't thinking of, though P&R still comes out on top for me.
posted by mullacc at 12:36 PM on June 19, 2012


Blues Brothers?
posted by shakespeherian at 12:37 PM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


I'm surprised Sandler has not done a salt-and-pepper buddy cop movie with Tim Meadows by now.
posted by Renoroc at 12:39 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I like Ghostbusters and Blues Brothers and everything, but: Li'l Sebastian.
posted by kmz at 12:40 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


To be fair, Chevy Chase is on Community, which is the second best TV show on right now.

But I get the feeling that ol' Chevy isn't in on the joke.

Also he's a jerkface.
posted by elsietheeel at 12:40 PM on June 19, 2012


Total derail, but man did I want the Chevy Chase / Dan Harmon fued to be an ornate stunt. I liked the idea that Harmon was using it to milk his reputation as a hard guy to work with, when in fact they were both yukking it up about it behind the scenes. The reality just seems to be that they're both hard guys to work with.
posted by roll truck roll at 12:42 PM on June 19, 2012


Blues Brothers?

I prefer Ghostbusters but there's really no question of what the best actual spin-off (as opposed to movie-that-happens-to-have-SNL-alums) is.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 12:46 PM on June 19, 2012


Senator Franken's done OK.

Which leads me to wonder, whatever the hell happened to his former partner, Tom Davis? Last time I saw him was like 15 years ago and he was hosting some zero-budget syndicated thing where he introduced movie trailers.

I mean they start off at the same point in space and time, on stage on Saturday Night Live in the 70s, and then the arcs of their lives just fly apart at relativistic speeds. Life is really weird.
posted by Naberius at 12:49 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


davejay: Doesn't count; he achieved significant fame before his work on SNL.

It also doesn't count because he was never a cast member.

Longtime Listener: George Burns managed to adapt several times and stay on top. Bob Hope didn't adapt and became a creaky, learing cliche who still raked in millions of bucks.

If he was a creaky cliche and still raked in millions of bucks, it's called staying on top and not having to adapt. Rodney Dangerfield was a creaky leering cliche most of his career. So is Milton Berle. Were/are they not "on top"? Did you see the eulogies for Bob Hope when he died? "National treasure," all that noise? Doesn't sound like he wasn't on top to me. Mind you, I agree that he was tedious and hackneyed, maybe long before he got old enough to be a cliche. But that's not synonymous with not being on top.

Sys Rq: Here's the thing about Adam Sandler: People watch his movies. A lot of people. The man has the ability to shit gold bricks. As godawful as his movies usually are, I really don't blame the guy for continuing to plop them out.

Exactly. He's never pretended to be anything he's not or tried to push himself in people's faces as a Serious Artiste (unlike so many other Hollywood denizens) -- with the possible exception of "Punch Drunk Love." So he makes shitty movies that offend critics like Jim Emerson. So does virtually everyone else. There have always been shitty movies, there always will be. Someone's gotta make 'em. It may as well be Adam Sandler, right? He annoys the hell out of me, but I don't have to watch his shit, and I don't, and his shit doesn't rise for me to the level of an offense against mankind.

ROU_Xenophobe: It's something about their offensively stupid nature combined with the sheer transparency of their calculating make-a-buck cynicism. Why bother doing something good? This crap will sell well enough.

That's really no different from 95% of the product that comes out of Hollywood these days that doesn't have Adam Sandler's name anywhere near it.
posted by blucevalo at 12:51 PM on June 19, 2012


Incidentally, I hope people do click through and watch a few other Half in the Bags. I've liked Red Letter Media since the epic Plinkett Star Wars reviews, and Half in the Bag is their best (and most consistent) output.

It's a two-buddies film review show, each episode about a half hour, usually covering two movies. Often, one movie is an old, schlock movie, and the other is a recent release. (Lately, it's been more frequently two recent releases.) It's also framed in the ongoing story of the two buddies, who are lazy VCR repairmen who were hired ages ago by Mr Plinkett, who is too oblivious to realize they will never fix his VCR and are instead living in his house, drinking beer and discussing films.

As you would expect from the Plinkett guys, they reviews are frequently a bit harsh... but only where it's due, and they'll also praise when deserved. Their reviews are informed mostly by how well the films are crafted and wfritten, rather than on artistic meaning or anything. It's generally a very interesting viewpoint from a couple of film nerds and aspiring filmmakers.
posted by gilrain at 12:55 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


High School yearbook pic here.

* reads Adam Sandler's yearbook quote *

....."Life is like a bowl of punch, it has a wang to it".....?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:57 PM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


He probably just has the same terrible taste as his fans. My guess is he likes the movies he makes.

*shrug* It's not like anyone is forcing you to watch them, although I suppose even the trailers can be annoying.
posted by delmoi at 12:59 PM on June 19, 2012


Exactly. A lot of hate toward Sandler comes from the fact that he has to know that the bulk of his career has been rubbish--highly remunerative rubbish, granted--yet he keeps on making it.

He's the Michael Caine of comedy. He'll be Alfred in the next re-boot of Batman. Just you watch.
posted by The World Famous at 1:00 PM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


about half of it comes from outside of the U.S.

That is really the key here. Today's Hollywood marketing has both eyes on the international market (see: Liam Neeson as avenging father, etc.)

Try to make a comedy that works in every language and locale. Dick and fart jokes are universal.
posted by mrgrimm at 1:04 PM on June 19, 2012


It's an interesting quote you chose for the title of this post, because "Billy Madison" is the outlier in his career, in that it is a genuinely funny movie that stands up to multiple viewings.

True enough. I think Billy Madison is by far the best (after Punch-Drunk Love).

And for god's sake, whatever you do, do not forget Shakes the Clown (tho I think he had the equivalent of a cameo there ...)
posted by mrgrimm at 1:07 PM on June 19, 2012


There's Bill Murray and...

Albert Brooks? Was he an actual cast member? Either way, the first episodes of SNL are on Netfllix streaming right now and it is fascinating viewing.
posted by mikepop at 1:09 PM on June 19, 2012


Sandler has made exactly one movie that I liked: Fifty First Dates. A surprisingly sweet film. (With the added bonus that you get to see Rob Schneider get the shit kicked out of him.)

But Sandler's song Ode to My Car cracks me up every time!
posted by Guy_Inamonkeysuit at 1:26 PM on June 19, 2012


Blucevalo: I was thinking of "staying on top" in the creative sense. Burns' movies from the 1970s are very watchable. Hope started coasting on his reputation at a much younger age. He was a national treasure because he was funny once upon a time, worked his ass off entertaining the troops through several wars, and lived to be 100. But creatively? He tried to stick with the "Rapid Robert" persona long past its expiration date.

Berle is an interesting case. It's really the Texaco/Buick show that made him, 1948 to 1956. Before that he had been a minor film and stage star for years, and after that he never regained the heights. He caught the TV wave at the right time and got knocked off once the competition got heavy.

If the only measure is money, then I guess Sandler is "on top." But that's not my unit of measure.
posted by Longtime Listener at 1:33 PM on June 19, 2012


Yes, please watch Half In The Bag. It makes surprisingly intelligent critiques of horrible movies but also does a good job talking about why good movies are good and reviews some smaller release movies.

It is fantastic.
posted by munchingzombie at 1:34 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I might actually kick someone out of my house for liking Parks & Recreation more than Ghostbusters. Well...maybe not, but I would definitely take away the good beer and make them drink the Lone Star of Shame.
posted by adamdschneider at 1:36 PM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


High School yearbook pic here.
Gotta love that Jewfro.
posted by e1c at 1:47 PM on June 19, 2012


>I might actually kick someone out of my house for liking Parks & Recreation more than Ghostbusters.

Yeah, you talk a big game now, but wait until push comes to shove. I mean I think I'm starting to fall hard for someone with a dog-eared paperback of Atlas Shrugged on her shelves. Atlas Fucking Shrugged for god's sake! What the hell's happening to me?
posted by Naberius at 1:58 PM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Adam Sandler + Drew Barrymore = sweet, surprisingly decent movie. Everything else I've seen (I haven't seen Punch Drunk Love)...well, yeah, he's making crap for oodles of cash and getting away with it, what else can you say? Other than "we should all be so lucky."
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:58 PM on June 19, 2012


I detected a whiff of homophobia in some of his work.

I think there is more than a whiff of it.


Yeah, they aren't the Westboro Baptist Church or a Santorum pep rally but I'd say 'more than a whiff' as well -- and what's strange/odd/interesting (to me, at least) is that it is a stench that has gotten stronger as the rest of society has become more tolerant.

Despite that being true, and despite intellectually agreeing with every anti-Sandler argument in this thread, and despite not really enjoying any of his movies even as a purveyor of guiltless guilty pleasures, I can't get worked up about him either way. It's almost like it's so bad to goes around the world again but not into being good but being inconsequential.

Or maybe it's just that enjoy a critic ripping a movie, and as Eric Zorn has collected, Sandler is, again, a gift that keeps on giving, so it all cancels out.

P.S.
In case you're wondering, here's the 2012 homophobia/homo-friendly scale in cultural terms:

Whiff of Homopobia.............Homo-Friendly
Adam Sandler's work...........Bravo
Santorum Pep Rally..............Logo
Westboro Baptist Church.....Bathhouse-sponsored float in a Pride Parade
posted by MCMikeNamara at 2:01 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Adam Sandler make corporate films with the express goal of generating a profit. I imagine he sees those movies as "paying the bills" films (bills at his wealth level being defined, presumably, as mansion maintenance, butler rental, dressage fees, etc.).

Every now and again, he decides to do something more artistically satisfying for himself and works for a director he admires in a better quality film.

To whit, perhaps he makes crappy but successful films to support his desire to occasionally make a high profile film with somebody decent.

I'll gladly avoid watching three "Jack and Jills" if it means we can get one "Punch Drunk Love" or "Funny People" every five years.
posted by Joey Michaels at 2:06 PM on June 19, 2012


Your search for "Armond White" returned 0 results
posted by Sticherbeast at 2:06 PM on June 19, 2012


When I saw the trailer for JACK AND JILL, the theater was utterly silent. Was this a prank? This was a prank, right? This was like the trailers at the beginning of TROPIC THUNDER, right? And I myself went into a whole mental tailspin where I literally couldn't believe that this was a real movie, it had to be a joke, it had to. The movie tagline was "HIS SISTER IS COMING FOR THE HOLIDAYS... AND IT ISN'T PRETTY!" which also made me think that this was a big joke, and then we'd file into the theater and Adam Sandler would give an angry speech and burn it to the ground.

I actually saw the South Park mention of 'Jack and Jill' before becoming aware of the actual movie, so when I saw the actual trailer it was a bit disconcerting, and also appallingly accurate.
posted by FatherDagon at 2:08 PM on June 19, 2012


I prefer Ghostbusters but there's really no question of what the best actual spin-off (as opposed to movie-that-happens-to-have-SNL-alums) is.

Yeah, it's called Caddyshack.
posted by Rocket Surgeon at 2:17 PM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


I thought 50 First Dates was really sweet and I love the soundtrack. Wedding singer too. So 80's nostalgia plus Drew Barrymore seems to be a winning combo.

I also liked Click. Make of that what you will. However, Spanglish was a total embarassment.

Also he was mildly ridiculous on SNL but so was Will Farrell, and everyone on there since the 70's.

Anyway, hating him is also ridiculous as is saying you wouldn't watch his movies 'for a million dollars'. He is too...innocuous to bother hating.
posted by bquarters at 2:19 PM on June 19, 2012


Also, Stripes and Spies Like Us aren't half bad. Actually, Parks and Rec would sit at the bottom of a long list of post SNL work, including some (if not all) of Sandler's work.
posted by Rocket Surgeon at 2:22 PM on June 19, 2012


People say they like Stripes but no one can ever remember what happens in the second half.
posted by shakespeherian at 2:24 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


People say they like Stripes but no one can ever remember what happens in the second half.

Of course I remember. The kid sinks the putt because Bill Murray blows up the gold course.
posted by Joey Michaels at 2:25 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


golf, but gold works, too
posted by Joey Michaels at 2:26 PM on June 19, 2012


Actually, Parks and Rec would sit at the bottom of a long list of post SNL work, including some (if not all) of Sandler's work.

Heretic!!
posted by elsietheeel at 2:28 PM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Also, Stripes and Spies Like Us aren't half bad.

The Three Amigos is excellent, too.
posted by The World Famous at 2:32 PM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Sorry to see Andy Samberg and Kevin James dip into the same fetid pool as Sandler

I actually had to google to see if Kevin James was someone different than I thought, because that guy has been shite forever.
posted by Hoopo at 2:33 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


People say they like Stripes but no one can ever remember what happens in the second half.

Pyle kills Hartman, and then commits suicide in front of Joker.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 2:34 PM on June 19, 2012 [9 favorites]


People say they like Stripes but no one can ever remember what happens in the second half.

It's funny that you say this, because I watched it not that long ago after a lapse of years, and I actually had no memory of the super RV plot. I remembered the movie ending with graduation from basic. Maybe it should have.
posted by adamdschneider at 2:39 PM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Nothing anyone can do or say can diminish my love for The Wedding Singer. It is the perfect '90s love letter to the '80s, and a funny romantic comedy of astonishing sweetness.

It is also notably the only film in which Sandler plays a genuinely nice, good person of average intelligence, who is not a Nice Guy(tm) or a jerkass Designated Protagonist. Most of Sandler's characters are shallow idiotic manchildren whose character growth involves becoming slightly less shallow and idiotic. The Wedding Singer's Robbie is an already-decent guy whose character arc involves overcoming his depression and going after what he wants--and what he really wants is pedestrian suburban domestica with the girl he loves, and that's okay! Because you can't always be rock stars, but you can still be happy!

I have caught all subsequent Sandler films on video in the hope of catching TWS vibe again, with ever-diminishing returns. Maybe that role was TOO nice for Sandler's taste, and his presence in it was total unrepeatable serendipity. Which is a shame, because I don't think anyone else would've worked as well in the role without making Robbie seem like a pushover, and I don't know if Sandler realizes that.  Sandler's RAGEFACE comedy doesn't work in TWS just because it's funny; it humanizes Robbie as a generally laid-back guy who is LOSING HIS MIND because his last nerve has snapped, so it's funny/painful to watch. In other movies the RAGEFACE comes off as HULK SMASH WITH COMEDY AND VOMIT JOKES, YOU LAUGH OR I KILL YOU. Still painful to watch, not so much funny.

Anyway, this is still one of the great movie love songs, seriously.
posted by nicebookrack at 3:01 PM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


People say they like Stripes but no one can ever remember what happens in the second half.

John Candy makes the cover of Tiger Beat.

I watched Stripes and Meatballs so many times as a kid if you gave me a line I could probably quote the next one from memory.
posted by me3dia at 3:05 PM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Adam Sandler movies exist in order to make Jim Carrey movies tolerable.
posted by Thorzdad at 3:07 PM on June 19, 2012


As someone who grew up seeing those movies replayed again and again when I was (much) younger, I used confuse Stripes and Reds when I'd see them listed in the TV Guide... so confusing.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 3:18 PM on June 19, 2012


Adam Sandler grew up in the same town as me, had the same fifth grade teacher (I sat in the row behind Adam Sandler's old seat!), and went to the same middle and high school. His family that I know are all very nice - I was his niece's reading buddy when she was in first grade and I was in fourth. My mom has had pleasant interactions with him when he was back in NH and walking his late bulldog, Meatball. And yet ... nothing makes up for just how horrible and awful Grownups was.
posted by ChuraChura at 3:22 PM on June 19, 2012


If he was a creaky cliche and still raked in millions of bucks, it's called staying on top and not having to adapt.

He raked in millions from property investments. Between him and Gene Autry, they owned half of Hollywood. (Actually, Hope mostly had property in Palm Springs.)

By the end of his career, he was mostly doing USO tours -- important work, but not something he did for profit -- and appearing in one offs as himself. He didn't really stay on top of the profession so much as semi-retired from it. Had he wanted to continue, he probably would have had to change his schtick. A lot of older comics did -- George Burns, as somebody mentioned, turned himself into a sort of an old man George Burns that was very castable. Milton Berle made a surprising turn to dramatic acting, and was quite good at it. (In fairness, he also played himself, and did a lot of tv spokesperson roles.)

Admittedly, they all sort of did variations on what they had done earlier. But they rebranded them, to use a modern term, so that they could be typecast in current projects. Bill Murray has done that as well -- he changed from being a sort-of lovable slacker to being a broken-hearted eccentric. His early character were usually down-and-out; the roles he plays nowadays are often well-to-do.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 3:22 PM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]



Albert Brooks? Was he an actual cast member? Either way, the first episodes of SNL are on Netfllix streaming right now and it is fascinating viewing.


I kept waiting for The Venture Brothers do make some reference to the recurring Bees joke in the early SNL but they never did ( or did it under my radar or something)
posted by The Whelk at 4:09 PM on June 19, 2012


People say they like Stripes but no one can ever remember what happens in the second half.

We went out for a few drinks, and the next thing we knew, there we were in Czechoslovakia.
posted by mephron at 4:18 PM on June 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


Also, yes, I was in a theatre for a mass-release movie and the only one in there, for the MST3K movie.

And as far as I can tell, Fifty First Dates is about 15 minutes long, according to how much I remember from seeing it on a red-eye plane trip.
posted by mephron at 4:19 PM on June 19, 2012


Front page of the LA Times (website) right now:

Adam Sandler Jumps the Shark
posted by cell divide at 4:25 PM on June 19, 2012


I enjoyed Happy Gilmore, The Wedding Singer, The Waterboy, Big Daddy, Little Nicky, Punch Drunk Love, Mr. Deeds, 50 First Dates, and Don't Mess With The Zohan. Everything else he's done I hated.

Some of those movies (Happy Gilmore) are really good to watch stoned. Something light hearted with a not-too-in-depth script that you start to read way too much into and laugh all the way through and you know is going to end on an upbeat note.

I don't watch Adam Sandler movies to feel any personal growth, anymore than I watched Ren & Stimpy for personal growth. They're just.. plain old fun movies. Not everyone likes that sort of thing, and that's okay.

But: His more recent REALLY bad, I can't even watch the previews without rolling my eyes.
posted by Malice at 4:28 PM on June 19, 2012


And as far as I can tell, Fifty First Dates is about 15 minutes long

No, it's 90 minutes long, but they just repeat the first 15 minutes over and over until it's done.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:32 PM on June 19, 2012


I can judge so many people in so many new ways thanks to this thread!
posted by The Whelk at 4:34 PM on June 19, 2012


People say they like Stripes but no one can ever remember what happens in the second half

The first half was a satire of some of the practices of the armed forces, the very same ones Full Metal Jacket commented on, and the second half a satire of the way our military spent it's money at the time. If the government really had decided to make a fully armed RV it would've - should've - made a lot more sense than the Star Wars program.
posted by Rocket Surgeon at 4:50 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


People say they like Stripes but no one can ever remember what happens in the second half

I was eleven or twelve years old when my dad let me watch "Stripes" with him on HBO. (To his credit, he didn't really pay attention, was too busy buried in his bridge mix to notice what his son was watching.) I remember there were some boobs in a shower scene, and then there were some more boobs in a scene that involved mud wrestling. Beyond that, I have no memories of the film.

It was the best movie ever.
posted by jbickers at 5:10 PM on June 19, 2012 [5 favorites]


I abhor Rob Schneider, and I very much blame Sandler for continuing to impose him on the public... but I found myself inclined to cut Adam a surprising amount of slack after watching him sing "Save It for Later" with Jon Brion on a bonus feature of the "Funny People" DVD. This crappy-quality video of it is the only one I could find on YouTube (start at 2:54), but ... I dunno. It still does something for me (though that thing is not making me laugh, now that I think about it).
posted by argonauta at 5:19 PM on June 19, 2012


Adam Sandler's best movie by far was Wet Hot American Summer.
posted by miyabo at 5:31 PM on June 19, 2012


Plus, he's a Republican. Ugh.

I feel like this is what it comes down to. Are there any staunch republicans that are genuinely funny or creative people?
posted by windbox at 5:47 PM on June 19, 2012


windbox: "I feel like this is what it comes down to. Are there any staunch republicans that are genuinely funny or creative people?"

Michael J. Nelson springs to mind, although not everyone finds him funny. I do, although his politics are pretty horrid.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 5:55 PM on June 19, 2012


Mike Nelson was my first thought too.
posted by drezdn at 5:56 PM on June 19, 2012


Well he hasn't been funny ....recently, like last decade or so. There is that.
posted by The Whelk at 6:04 PM on June 19, 2012


windbox: I feel like this is what it comes down to. Are there any staunch republicans that are genuinely funny or creative people?

Just recently, and sadly, there was Ray Bradbury. It's actually a useful exercise, as a young, angry liberal. When I start getting a little to blindly-hateful about politics, I go through my heroes and realize how many people I've loved and respected for their creative work held political beliefs I despise.

(A lot of my heroes are liberals, too, mind you... this isn't a closeted conservative issue, here.)
posted by gilrain at 6:08 PM on June 19, 2012


Kelsey Grammar, the Zuckers...
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 6:12 PM on June 19, 2012


Mike Nelson is still doing Rifftrax, which are funny enough that I have now seen two of the twilight movies.
posted by lkc at 6:19 PM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


Neither Kelsey Grammer nor e Zuckers have been funny during this century, if that.
posted by The Whelk at 6:22 PM on June 19, 2012


Are you kidding me? Kelsey Grammer was hystericasl in Boss!
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 6:24 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


hystericasl? Who am I, Bill Cosby?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 6:28 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


How dare he do the same thing over and over… like the Three Stooges, Gallagher, Abbott and Costello, Chaplin, Rodney Dangerfield, Jeff Foxworthy, etc ad naus. He's not my cup of tea, but meh, it's a livin'. I'm sure he's crying about how much everyone hates him when he depo's those checks.
posted by readyfreddy at 6:52 PM on June 19, 2012


Billy Crystal, Jane Curtin (Kate and Allie big sitcom hit), Joan Cusack (great on Shameless, currently), Robert Downey Jr., Will Ferrell, Julia Louis-Dreyfuss, Michael McKean, Laurie Metcalf, Dennis Miller alas, Tracy Morgan, Eddie Murphy, Colin Quinn, Chris Rock, Harry Shearer, Ben Stiller, Damon Wayans.
posted by cogneuro at 6:56 PM on June 19, 2012


Which leads me to wonder, whatever the hell happened to his former partner, Tom Davis? Last time I saw him was like 15 years ago and he was hosting some zero-budget syndicated thing where he introduced movie trailers.

I mean they start off at the same point in space and time, on stage on Saturday Night Live in the 70s, and then the arcs of their lives just fly apart at relativistic speeds. Life is really weird.
posted by Naberius at 2:49 PM on June 19 [1 favorite +] [!]


Unfortunately, he's terminally ill. I haven't really kept up with his activities since the SNL days.
posted by metagnathous at 7:27 PM on June 19, 2012


I'm sure he's crying about how much everyone hates him when he depo's those checks.

Which is all that really matters!
posted by shakespeherian at 7:28 PM on June 19, 2012


I had the distinctly chaotic experience of having a complicated non-romantic romance with Sandler's first manager, and of the many things that could be described as baggage in that relationship, the fact that he help to foist Sandler on the world was something that I had to work hard to forgive. Being in the "industry," as they call it out there, he was compelled to go see every movie ever, which meant that I, for the duration of our limerance, also had to go see every movie ever, which sucked mightily, as I'm generally a two-movies-a-year sort of fellow. Any time there was a trailer for yet another Sandler joint in the hour of ads and trailers that forged my preference to be a two-movies-a-year sort of fellow, I couldn't help but turn and glare at the big shaven-headed brute with narrowed, accusatory eyes and mumble "yooooooou did this" in a whispery growl.

"Hush, he was a sweet kid back then."

"Yeah, I bet."

"Do you want some popcorn?"

"Yes. Heavy on the simmering resentment, though."

"Of course. What else?"

"Lots of salt."

Of course, the Sandler stories weren't even really worth telling, and his stand-up work back then consisted of surrealist tales about Elvis being in his refrigerator. Unfortunately, my intended managed to jettison what he saw as a difficult sell a bit before his career took off, and thus missed out on the monstrous payday.

"Mind you, I'm not saying you're as bad as Hitler," I said, as the trailer finally slid off the screen like a greasy once-frozen pre-formed hamburger patty slouching out of a chipped teflon pan with coagulated grey remnants of formerly pink slime drizzling behind, "but man—you could have stopped this."

'Twas all in loving jest, though...mostly.

Fortunately, he redeemed himself with some genuinely brilliant artists in the intervening years, so I won't have to go back in time and shoot him should I ever arrive in a position from which I can bend spacetime around my little finger. I hear Punch Drunk Love was okay, but oy vey, I just...can't.

"Electric Lunchladyland" was funny, however.
posted by sonascope at 7:39 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I, um...

The first time I heard "Hanukkah Song" I was convinced it was by Jonathan Richman. (Okay, until it came up to the "Smoke some marijuana-kah" line, anyway.)
posted by pxe2000 at 7:50 PM on June 19, 2012


So when are we getting a New Yorker profile of Adam Sandler? Seth MacFarlane just had one published ( albeit one with a vague hostility vs him just bubbling under the surface) , so has already blazed the way. These two guys are currently the most highly compensated , laziest comedy stars in Hollywood. ( MacFarlane is TV's highest paid showrunner... so much for the dignity of that coinage)
posted by Bwithh at 8:47 PM on June 19, 2012


Billy Crystal, Jane Curtin (Kate and Allie big sitcom hit), Joan Cusack (great on Shameless, currently), Robert Downey Jr., Will Ferrell, Julia Louis-Dreyfuss, Michael McKean, Laurie Metcalf, Dennis Miller alas, Tracy Morgan, Eddie Murphy, Colin Quinn, Chris Rock, Harry Shearer, Ben Stiller, Damon Wayans.

Wait, are we doing the funny Republicans list or the other one?
posted by adamdschneider at 8:50 PM on June 19, 2012


I feel like this is what it comes down to. Are there any staunch republicans that are genuinely funny or creative people?
I googled to confirm on Drew Carey (yes he is ) and inadvertently found out that Sarah Michelle Gellar is one too. So thanks for that.
posted by Bwithh at 8:54 PM on June 19, 2012


(Actually, Hope mostly had property in Palm Springs.)

Hope and Crosby agreed: Fred McMurray owned LA.
posted by ovvl at 9:09 PM on June 19, 2012


Mike Nelson was responsible for that Rebecca Black debacle, or, as I like to call it, the Rebecca Blackacle.

In the Joel Hodgson, the show had a culty edge. Joel and the robots were engaged viewers, but their engagement wasn't just mockery. And I say this even though I count Bill Corbett as a friend, and respect the man, but, for my tastes, the Mike Nelson era was a little more bullying, a little bit more mocking, and a lot less fun. It's easy to find something terrible and make fun of it. It's harder to find something weird and celebrate it.

But to each their own tastes. Nonetheless, when Nelson's tastes turned toward holding a teenager girl up to widespread, vicious public scorn, I think it tipped into unethical territory, and I think Nelson owes her a sincere apology.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 9:34 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Count the number of ex SNL cast members whose post-SNL careers have have aged gracefully.

Then, to compare and contrast, count the number of ex-SCTV members whose post-SCTV careers have aged gracefully.
posted by y2karl at 11:05 PM on June 19, 2012


People say they like Stripes but no one can ever remember what happens in the second half

Back in 2007, I bought a Dodge/Freightliner/Mercedes Sprinter van to be our family vehicle (our "Wagon Queen Family Truckster", if you will).

I was so excited to order "EM-50" as our vanity plate for our 'Urban Assault Vehicle', and was devastated when the Oregon DMV said that letter-letter (dash) number-number plates were unavailable... reserved for some official purpose... bastards. Probably some Czechoslovakian plot.
posted by rodeoclown at 11:25 PM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I like stupid movies, but not his stupid movies. Not all of his movies are completely unwatchable, some are even good, but when they're bad, they read like the worst kind of prepubescent mary sue fanfiction.

The horrifically bad gay marriage one, for instance, opens with him badly beating his coworkers at basketball, talking with a girl who is upset because he had sex with her twin the night before, who shows up and nearly gets tricked into kissing her sister, then he rides off on a firetruck with the twins running after him asking him for an autograph on his nude calendar and fighting over who gets to call him.

I'm sure he might say it's to establish how manly his character is, but it's just so stupid. There are better ways to do that. And in all of his worst movies, all of the supporting characters are written as cardboard cutouts for his mary sue character to put in their place.
posted by stavrogin at 12:04 AM on June 20, 2012


During my junior year of high school, after being subjected to one too many Adam Sandler movie nights, I wrote a snark piece entitled "How to Make an Adam Sandler Movie Without Really Trying." Glad to see that I'm not the only one who noticed that all of his movies are basically the same. That said, I think he's done good stuff - I love "The Wedding Singer," and "Punch Drunk Love" is a fine film. Even "50 First Dates" is pretty cute.
posted by honeybee413 at 1:12 AM on June 20, 2012


The Whelk: "Well he hasn't been funny ....recently, like last decade or so. There is that"

Actually, some of the RiffTrax stuff is pretty good. It got me through Twilight!
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 1:39 AM on June 20, 2012


I just don't get why people are mad at Adam Sandler.

Andrew O'Hehir's review of "That's My Boy", quoted at the end of the FPP article, sums up my feelings nicely.
Yes, you're right; I'm taking this all too seriously. Sandler's brand of comedy involves no crimes against humanity, and if people want to pay good money to watch him beat off to a picture of a polyester-suited grandma, I guess Chief Justice Roberts would say that's why we have the First Amendment. It's just that there's something bitter and weird and unsettling about the place where Sandler seems to be right now. He's definitely capable of better -- maybe not of great, but let's say of pleasant mediocrity -- and his current work feels like a classic cry for help. I'm not sure which possibility is worse: That his screen persona is completely cynical, calculated to appeal to the ultra-fragile egos of teenage boys, or that he actually needs this reassurance on a personal level, because he's a 45-year-old comedian doing jism jokes and hating himself for it.
I'll add that the author's point about Sandler's movies being driven by the desire to bully and belittle folks who are already marginalized is a good one. I don't mind comedians who are basically phoning in the same shlock over and over again; even the ones who aren't honest about it. What I do take issue with is Sandler's utter contempt for his audience, and the mean-spirited nature of his comedy as directed at easy targets.

Jerry Lewis changed and lost something along the way.

Oh, I must disagree with you here. Funny Bones, a movie which examines the very nature of comedy itself, shows that Lewis has gained something pretty valuable in terms of what being a comic can be - the honesty, the vulnerability, the anger, and the joy is expertly handled by Lewis in this role. Loved this film.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 7:07 AM on June 20, 2012


Adam Sandler makes movies so that he can play kissy-face with Hollywood's hottest women (Salma Hayek, Kate Beckinsale, Leighton Meester, Drew Barrymore ... and more)

Isn't it obvious?
posted by 00dimitri00 at 7:19 AM on June 20, 2012


Jerry Lewis changed and lost something along the way.

How are we slotting The King of Comedy into this rubric?
posted by shakespeherian at 7:25 AM on June 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


Or Funny Bones?
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 12:36 PM on June 20, 2012


Weirdly enough, I went to high school with AS

Holy shit! So did I!

I mean, same high school, different time period. About a decade later.

Anyway, to contribute something on-topic: all the talk about former SNL cast members ties into And Here's The Kicker, which I'm reading right now, and which is super-interesting. Harold Ramis talks a bit about Bill Murray and Chevy Chase.
posted by Greg Nog at 1:33 PM on June 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


Greg Nog: That's a great book. I have re-read it twice. Makes me question all of my life choices.
posted by ColdChef at 1:40 PM on June 20, 2012


Fuck, like, breakfast makes me question all of my life choices.
posted by adamdschneider at 4:16 PM on June 20, 2012


Mike Nelson was responsible for that Rebecca Black debacle, or, as I like to call it, the Rebecca Blackacle.

Thats kind of a stretch. He was one person who tweeted it. The article says the rapid spread "might have" been related to Mike Nelson tweeting it. He's got 19000 followers, that's nothing for a celebrity on twitter. It also says Tosh.0 posted on their website, and it was all over reddit and other forums.

I really don't understand how you (or Mashable) are coming to the conclusion that he was responsible for it.
posted by lkc at 8:31 PM on June 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


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