I was angry at Adam Sandler. Still angry about Jack & Jill. I don’t go in to an Adam Sandler movie expecting anything but sophomoric humor centering around alcohol, sex, and probably fart jokes, and it astounded me that Sandler’s last release didn’t even measure up to those pretty low standards. That’s My Boy did. I think I mentioned that part of the success of this movie would depend on people being able to get enough entertainment out of it that it would serve as apology for Jack & Jill. For me it managed to do that.
That being said, this is probably going to be a very polarizing movie. If you are one of those people that either never finds Sandler funny, or you only watch tepid melodramas based on real life, or you can’t find anything funny about getting drunk, having sex, or the occasional fart that sounds like a chainsaw. Take a pass on this. If you use words like “vulgar” or “crude” to describe comedies with any regularity, take a pass. If you’re going to get bent out of shape by some taboo subjects that are purely make believe, take a pass. Otherwise, you might find some entertainment value in That’s My Boy.
What did I like in this? I won’t say it’s a great movie, but it is frequently funny and consistently so, so it’s not like the broken clock syndrome. Milo Ventimiglia is doing a role the likes of which I haven’t seen him do before. He’s funny, and clearly doesn’t take this seriously. He wasn’t like James Franco in Your Highness, either, where he needed to take it more seriously. Adam Sandler was okay, but I got tired of hearing the F bomb and “wicked” come out of his mouth every thirty seconds. Andy Samberg was also pretty good, although he seems to have mellowed. A LOT. It’s not a bad thing, but he didn’t have the energy I expected based on other movies I’ve seen him in.
But mostly, I liked the two middle-aged women sitting behind me. They were like a cross between Tyler Perry as Medea and those two grumpy old guys from The Muppet Show. I knew I was in trouble when the trailer to Hit & Run appeared and they lost their shit when there’s the implication that Bradley Cooper’s character survives prison rape. The entire movie this time around was peppered with their increasingly entertaining comments, my personal favorite being “Ooh, girl. You know I wanna take a bite out of that white boy’s ass (talking about Milo Ventimiglia’s nude scene).” My second favorite was early in the movie when they scream their shock that the teacher is pregnant. It was easily one of the best examples of human stupidity (not the movie, the women) that I’ve ever seen. If you’re going to a movie where you KNOW the subject matter is the relationship between a father and son where the boy was the product of an inappropriate relationship between a boy and his teacher… you shouldn’t be shouting “Oh my GOD!” when the teacher appears at her trial well in to her pregnancy. But, they did make the funny moments funnier (they also made me spit up Coke through my nose twice).
So I recommend this with some caution. It will help if you have one of those pontificating fools (or maybe even two) who feels the need to comment on everything that happens. If you can’t manage that, you won’t miss anything by waiting for video.