That’s My Boy.
Adam Sandler is back to doing R-rated comedies and co-stars with fellow Saturday Night Live alum Andy Samberg. The basic gist is that Adam Sandler’s character was seduced by his teacher when he was in Jr High and a baby was born out of it. This child (understandably) hated this experience and removed himself from his father and created a new life. Well, in current day, the two are reunited and things don’t work out so hot. It’s actually kind of an original idea and there are some saving graces that make this movie work, to a certain extent.
This movie has a Metacritic score of 27/100 and a 24% on RottenTomatoes. But let me say now that I actually laughed a lot and though the movie may be absolutely ridiculous, I had a good time. Here’s why.
This movie reminded me of Wedding Crashers. It features a strange rich white family that slowly is revealed to be absolutely crazy. Most of the movie’s laughs come from these supporting characters, including Will Forte, Nick Swardson, Heroes’ Milo Ventimiglia, and even Vanilla Ice (as himself). Samberg is solid as the straight-man against Sandler’s absolutely crazy “Donny.” Most of Samberg’s performance seems improvised but it works perfectly as he reacts to these ridiculous scenarios just as most of us would.
Because of the ridiculousness of most of these scenarios, I couldn’t stop laughing. Maybe that says something about my sense of humor or how badly I needed a good laugh. But if you enjoyed movies like Wedding Crashers or the more current example of ridiculous The Hangover, you might appreciate what That’s My Boy has to offer. So, if you ask me if it’s funny, I’d give you a definite yes.
What didn’t work?
Strangely, the least effective piece of this puzzle was Adam Sandler. He wasn’t that funny, as it seems like he’s played this character before. The chaos that follows him is hilarious, but there were many flat punchlines with his character. Now, he does a suitable job at actually acting, especially in the last third of the movie, where the movie shows some real depth. Most of the movie is “How funny, a kid was raising another kid and now he’s messed up!” but in the end, they actually deal with how tragic and unfortunate this is for Samberg’s character, who didn’t really have anyone to raise him. So, Sandler was fine as an actor but (for me anyways) wasn’t the comedic catalyst that I am used to.
A lot of this movie also seems very … borrowed. There are masturbation jokes straight out of American Pie and there are plenty of nods to The Hangover and how a party can escalate quickly and how ridiculous a recognizable icon can be if used properly (either Mike Tyson or Vanilla Ice respectively). I still laughed, but it was like a 2-hour sense of deja vu.
This is stupid typical R-rated humor but some of you will no doubt enjoy this. It knows what it is (and does it well) but most of its jokes feel familiar. I still had a grin on my face though, so it wasn’t a complete waste. Not a great film but still has some value.