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Mindless, Goofball Comedy Is Back

June 10, 2008 - John Whittaker

I tried about 4,733 ways to write this posting, but nothing really worked.

I think it's a sign that I'm really, really excited about Adam Sandler's new movie, Don’t Mess With The Zohan.

I'll admit it wasn't always like that. Two weeks ago, when I first saw the trailers for the movie, I was ready to throw it in the $5 bin at Wal-Mart with Spanglish. It seemed too good to be true - and that's what I was leaving it for. Honestly, for about five years, Sandler has reminded me of a less funny Mark Ruffalo. Don't Mess With The Zohan was just another romantic comedy billed as an old-school Adam Sandler comedy.

I grew up with Billy Madison and Happy Gilmore. My brother and I have been known to have entire conversations quoting Sandler movies. The News Gal is nodding her head as I type this and picking up a baseball bat. I don't know what she's going to do with it. 

I had the first Adam Sandler CD and listened to it endlessly. Anyone who doesn't laugh at Fatty McGee has no funny bone. I'll watch Billy Madison anytime it's on, and, if I haven't seen it in a while, I'll throw the tape (that feels weird to type) into my VCR. I think I just sent anyone younger than 15 running for a dictionary.

I first noticed the changes with Big Daddy - a movie with a plot, and characters, and other stuff, but enough comedy to keep the unsuspecting general populace from noticing the bigger change that was coming.

I enjoyed 50 First Dates. It had funny scenes, but left me wanting more comedy. A proper Adam Sandler movie would never make me think my apartment was dusty and that my eye allergies were acting up again. Spanglish never officially happened - and no, I don't know what's actually inside of the Spanglish case on my DVD shelf.

Click was funny until it got preachy and depressing, and until my butt fell asleep because the movie was too damned long -- though I love Adam Sandler in a fat suit as much as anybody.

Sandler makes a billion dollars a year. Why would he go back to the sort of mindless comedy that made him rich in the first place? That wouldn't make any sense, would it? Over time, Sandler showed he can play the "I'm not attractive enough to bag a hot chick but I'm a good guy with a good heart' type lead in romantic comedies pretty well.

But, finally, after years of waiting, a mindless, gag-driven Adam Sandler movie is coming to a theater near me. Maybe there will be more quotes for Matt and I to memorize and terrorize our friends and family with. $50 says the best man's toast at my wedding will have something from Happy Gilmore in it, though maybe, just maybe, the Zohan could make an appearance.

Maybe there will be a new movie to watch after I get home at midnight on a Saturday - something goofy and mindless.

I think the News Gal may have just turned purple. I should probably be going…..


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Seeing Billy Madison for the first time is easily one of my top 25 favorite memories of my youth. "Stop looking at me, swan."