Henry Roth is a man afraid of commitment up until he meets the beautiful Lucy. They hit it off and Henry think he's finally found the girl of his dreams, until he discovers she has short-term memory loss and forgets him the very next day.
Benjamin Barry is an advertising executive and ladies' man who, to win a big campaign, bets that he can make a woman fall in love with him in 10 days. Andie Anderson covers the "How To" beat for "Composure" magazine and is assigned to write an article on "How to Lose a Guy in 10 days." They meet in a bar shortly after the bet is made.
Henry Roth lives in a Hawaiian paradise with the company of endless women with no strings attached. This is until he meets Lucy Whitmore. Both Henry and Lucy enjoy the company of each other and feel the start of a serious relationship occurring. Approaching Lucy the next day, Henry is confused when Lucy fails to recognize him. This is the moment Henry discovers that Lucy actually suffers from short term memory loss and can't remember each individual day. Henry won't let this stop him and is prepared to make her fall in love with him all over again, each and every day. Written by
Take a little "Memento," Add a generous helping of "Groundhog Day," and even a little of "Sommersby" and you have "50 First Dates". Drew Barrymore and Adam Sandler create a synergy that neither has been able to capture with anyone else. Together, they produce a romantic team comparable to Gere and Roberts, Day and Hudson, Grant and Loren and Tracy and Hepburn. My wife and I watch "The Wedding Singer" at least once a year. While "50 First Dates" is a superior movie, I don't know if I can take the melancholy ending again.
For once I'm grateful for the Khamakazee antics of Sandler's acting ensemble, particulary Sean Astin and Rob Schneider. If Schneider wasn't playing such a farcial role, he would be a natural for an Oscar. Certainly the animals add a lot to the farce. The goofy humor makes the basically tragic scenario not only bearable but almost pleasant. It's also genuinely funny.
Sandler convincingly plays a marine biologist(!!!)in Hawaii who enjoys "entertaining" the "mainlanders." Sandler doesn't date "locals". He wants nothing to interfere with his dream of studying walruses. He discovers Barrymore having breakfast in a local bar and grill. What captures Sandler's attention, even more than her beauty, is Barrymore's creativity. What Sandler doesn't know is that Barrymore has brain damage. The brain cells which move short term memory to long term storage are destroyed. She forgots everything she's learned during the day while she sleeps. So, Sandler, the lothario who forgots his relationships with mainlanders after one week finds himself in love with a woman who forgets hers in 24 hours. That's writing genius, something you don't see very often, and Sandler, Barrymore, and Sandler's acting troupe handle it perfectly.
Though my wife is physically handicapped, my mother has severe short term memory loss. So, I really related to the trajedy so expertly portrayed in "50 First Dates". It's not often I give a movie that leaves me this sad a "10". The last time, I believe, was "Sommersby". Nonetheless, "50 First Dates" is a "10," since there is nothing about it I can suggest that make it better.
P.S. Looking forward to the NEXT Sandler/Barrymore collaboration.
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