The Ridiculous 6.
Adam Sandler has a contract with Netflix to produce original films. The first of these films is The Ridiculous 6. It’s only been out a few days but already it has people questioning if they want to keep their Netflix subscription. Let’s dive into it.
Sandler stars as Tommy, who was raised by a Native American tribe way back in American history. In the opening moments, he meets his real father (Nick Nolte) who triggers a serious of events in which Sandler must venture out into the world and recruit a group of willing accomplices to steal a large amount of money. In this ragtag group we have Jorge Garcia (Lost), Luke Wilson, Terry Crews, Rob Schneider, and Taylor Lautner. And a burro with a bad case of diarrhea. Yes, really.
We also have cameos and supporting roles for Will Forte, Vanilla Ice, Chris Kattan, Steve Zahn, Whitney Cummings, Jon Lovitz, Blake Shelton, Danny Trejo, and many many more.
While the movie is not good at all, there’s one thing I can say as a positive. Some of these actors really tried and it’s shame that they tried so hard for this. For example, Steve Zahn is acting his heart out but it can’t save this movie. Even Jorge Garcia and Rob Schneider, who both get a decent amount of screentime, are trying. Garcia is doing literal tumbles and really putting in 110% but their characters are a huge detriment to the story (and to our society as a whole, I might be bold enough to say). The only one that seems to be “phoning it in” is Sandler, which has become his thing over the past few years.
What doesn’t work?
Here’s where the fun begins.
This movie is trash. On the page, I have no idea what happened and what these guys were thinking. I’m a fan of comedy, so don’t take this as an assault on the genre. This movie fails as a comedy. A diaretic donkey is not revolutionary writing. The jokes are overdone and cliche and completely unoriginal. I chuckled a few times, yes, but usually at how absurd this movie had become.
The bigger question, and why people are talking about leaving Netflix altogether, is the issue of racism. Now, the movie begins and you think Sandler is playing a Native American in a very stereotypical and upsetting way. It’s revealed that he was just raised by them, but that doesn’t really make it better. There are women named Never Wears Bra and Beaver Breath. I’m not going to go into this too much, as you hopefully won’t watch this movie anyways, but it’s a second layer to its terribleness.
“You know how some Native Americans have names that are like… nouns. Let’s make a joke about that.”
“Is there a way we can also make those names really sexist and potentially homophobic too?”
“OF COURSE THERE IS!”
Again, I digress. Regardless how offensive or insensitive (or straight up racist) this film is, it still fails as a film. It feels like it was meant to be an homage to classics like The Magnificent Seven but wanted to give it the Kung Pow treatment. I say this because it has similar beats and moments, as well as very reminiscent fight scenes that showcase Sander’s Tommy almost freezing time and moving so fast that he can fight off bandits and thieves. These moments are excruciatingly sad and have horrible CGI effects. And they don’t fit in this Western satire, like they did with Kung Pow which was “satirizing” classic kung fu movies, so that technique made a little more sense.
So let’s look at all that together, because they all come into play in the first five minutes of the movie. Sandler’s Tommy is dressed in very stereotypical Native American clothes and is with a beautiful Native American women (who is likely regretting doing this movie). He fights off some bandits by moving so fast that he throws a tomahawk into one of their groins.
And also, Vanilla Ice stars as Mark Twain, who raps and freestyles.
What is going on with this movie? Who greenlit this? And what sort of gold nuggets are we going to get from Adam Sandler next?
Don’t you dare. Don’t. I know you’re tempted. “It can’t be that bad.” Stop. This lazy movie was a catastrophe on the page but somehow all of these actors signed on and, even though they acted their little hearts out, couldn’t save this ship from sinking. It’s offensive to all sorts of populations but regardless, it is a travesty of a “film.”