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Don't compare today's comedy version of "The Longest Yard" to the old with Burt Reynolds. Today's is good and effective for what it is, a comedy film with a bit of action interlaced. So many classic Hollywood films were so good, that any attempt at a remake is just going to fall flat on its face. The Longest Yard with Adam Sandler is more of today's take on the story if you asked me. It has humor, and is Sandler at his best with Chris Rock playing his role well too. Critics and classic moviegoers beware. Unless you are open-minded, you will never find the hidden treasures of the movie world. It's a football comedy, plain and simple.
I have read bad comment, after bad comment, about this movie, and I saw it, and I am sick and tired of everybody giving it a bad rap. People are downsizing it because it isn't enough like the original. But to truly enjoy this movie, you have to realize that it isn't really a remake. It's an homage. All it has is the same basic idea, and the characters. I found this an absolutely brilliant comedy, filled with frequent references to the original. It's genius characterizations of what some prison inmates might act like work perfectly. Especially Richard Kiels character turned into a weightier, less intelligent black man. I also quite enjoyed the frequent humor derived from taking scenes from the original and changing the words into PG-13. Although it originally seems silly, the player sh***ng himself scene is so much better when you realize it was originally the broke his f****ng neck scene. Also, the million one-liners, I guess could be taken badly, but only if you're looking for them to be. Possibly the reason everybody hates this so much is because they're looking for it to be the original. If you're going to see this, remember, it's not the original. Its an Adam Sandler movie making homage to the Longest Yard.
People who lined up to bash this film had better get used to seeing
more like it. Hollywood these days is stuck in a rut where three types
of films account for nearly every film they release. Those are:
remakes, sequels, and films based on comic book characters. The Longest
Yard would of course fit into the first category. It is a slightly
updated, but fairly faithful remake of the 1974 film of the same name.
This time, we have Adam Sandler who plays the incarcerated quarterback
that Burt Reynolds played in the original. Reynolds is on hand to play
a minor role which the original film also contained. The plot is still
the same. Prisoners vs guards in a game of football. Pretty simple.
Did the film make me laugh? Sure it did. There are more than a few chuckles, but not much in the way of side-splitting material. Sandler is actually not that memorable in this film. Some of the best performances actually come from people you might not expect. I was truly impressed with Nelly and Michael Irvin. Both men had their characters down, and really proved they could actually act. Chris Rock is about as good as you'd expect. Your own personal opinion of him will determine how you rate his performance. James Cromwell plays the corrupt warden about as well as you might expect. He's pretty much got the market cornered on evil white guy roles, since J.T. Walsh's untimely death. The rest of the cast becomes a game of "see if you can spot the NFL player, WWE combatant, or famous sports journalist". And what on earth was Cloris Leachman doing in the Bernadette Peters role from the original? Did she lose some kind of bet with Sandler on the set of Spanglish or something?
Should this film have been made? Well, we film critics can argue that point all day. The truth of the matter is that this film grossed over $150,000,000!!! As far as the studio bosses are concerned, this film was more than worth it. This was actually one of the more profitable comedies released this year, so you can expect more like it in the near future. I'll give it 6 of 10 stars. Don't expect anywhere near the film we got in 1974. But there are plenty of worse films on the shelves at your local video store.
I went to this film thinking it was going to suck. I was a big fan of
the original. Loved it as a kid, although I know it's not a great film
I was surprised at how fun the remake was, although it is a superficial kind of fun. The original had better casting and stronger character development. Reynolds and Eddie Albert are so wonderful in their roles, Sandler and the new warden are pretty damn lame in comparison. And the original spent more time building the characters, so that by the end, the film really resonated in a way the remake does not.
BUT, the remake is a fun & energetic piece of pop entertainment. It goes much more for broad comedy and pretty much succeeds. It's not super- hilarious, but it's funny enough and much funnier than the original. Although Sandler is wrong for the part, he's likable enough. Chris Rock is funny, as are some of the others. And the overall brisk pace keeps the whole thing afloat.
Yes, it's a disposable movie. It lacks the dark undercurrents that made the first one so good. It even seems to self-consciously acknowledge that it will never stand outside the shadow of Burt Reynolds. No, it doesn't have as much substance, but it has its own childish charm.
The remake here was surprisingly good and pretty true to the original
movie but will be most enjoyed by Adam Sandler fans or fans of the
original. Except for a few exceptions to keep it up to date and a few
to screw with those that saw the original, the stories are pretty much
identical. The main character were all the same as well, but the
supporting cast, especially the guards and cons, were changed up a bit.
Former NFL quarterback Paul Crewe (Sandler, replacing the original Burt Reynolds) is arrested and faces a 3 year sentence for GTA, DUI and I am sure some other stuff which is unimportant. After his sentencing, Warden Hazen (James Cromwell) pulls a few strings to get Crewe placed in his prison so he can coach his semi-pro team. Upon the urging of Captain Knauer (William Fichtner), Crewe declines, which sets the wheels in motion for an eventual game between Crewe and the convicts against Knauer and the guards.
The supporting football players were the real highlights of the movie, most notably Bob Sapp and Kevin Nash (I hate to say it but Nash did a good job. If only he was this good a wrestler), with honorable mentions to Nelly, Michael Irvin, Bill Goldberg, Steve Austin, Bill Romanowski & Brian Bosworth. Also, who could forget Chris Rock as Caretaker? This could not have been cast better.
Overall, A good comedy worth seeing. Especially if you are a Sandler fan.
I'm going to start off by admitting that I had no interest in this
movie whatsoever. I only saw it because I was dragged. Was it as bad as
I thought? Not at all. It was way better than I expected it to be. We
all know those mindless comedies that barely have a plot, cheap
dialogue and jokes, and are just filled with stupidities galore. I
thought this was one of them. I was wrong. This remake had a pretty
good storyline and a few laughable jokes and moments. I usually don't
laugh out loud at movies, but I did find myself doing so three or four
times here. So that takes care of the Funniness Factor. The story is
easy to get involved in--you want to see the prisoners kick the guards'
butts in football. It is a well played story and fun to watch. Sandler
is not one of my favorite actors, but I have to give him his props
because I am starting to see that he usually stars in movies that are
at least remotely funny and that have a pretty decent plot. But the
main thing is that his characters usually act the same. I would get
into the slight lack of character development, but I'm sure you don't
care to read about that. You only wish to know if this movie is funny
or not and if it's worth watching! Well, yes the movie has its moments
and it's good to watch, especially if you like football or are a
Sandler fan. This has its good kicks and it is near a touchdown in the
comedy category. So if you want to have a good time and relax to some
entertainment, you can watch this one =)
I too got to see a free-sneak peak of this film in NYC and I'll tell you one thing . . there were no sleepers in the cinema! A very mixed crowd from race to ages here and everyone seemed to be having a great time . . even the teenager who sat behind me who reminded me of every actor when he appeared on the screen .. like Nelly. I haven't had this much fun in the theater in quite awhile. No, it's not a super serious film, but if you like football and the good feeling of revenge you'll love this film. Lots of violent blows from the guards and a little racism, but nothing too "out of the ordinary" . . some great one-liners from Chris Rock's character. A definite #1 film for Memorial Day weekend when it opens. I can see this film bringing in some good dough this summer.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I just saw this movie for the first time. I really like sports movies,
so I was expecting to like it. But within the first 15 minutes there
were so many stereotypes and really derogatory comments that I was
disgusted. But, I didn't have the opinion to stop watching it (I was on
a bus with 40 other people).
I was so shocked that they would do that. I mean, they talked about black people, white people, and gay/transvestite people is a way that you would think that the writers had never really met any of those people. The stereotypes of the black people was everything you would expect. Trash talking, playing dirty. They are even playing street basketball. The white people are just as bad. The one that shocked me the most was the portrayal of the transvestites. These people were shown in such a bad way. It was suggested that they kind of slept around and that they pushed their sexual orientation onto everyone. Granted, I have never been in prison. But those kind of people do not act like that in the real world. At least not the kind that I've met. If a person didn't know the facts, they could easily assume that's how all transvestites act. And I would think that in a country like ours, people would come to be a little more respectful and not pull stuff like that.
I was basically appalled by the writing of this movie. It is one thing to write to what the audience wants to see. It is a totally different subject to write characters based on stereotypes and misconceptions. The writers really need to think about what they are writing next time.
I loved this movie! I have seen the original, also, and I have to say that this version is much more fun to watch and should appeal to a wider audience. For those who thought this was going to be a more serious movie for Adam Sandler....what on earth gave you that idea?? It's a comedy. It's meant to be funny and it is. If you are not a fan of Adam Sandler's then don't bother with it, because you won't like it. If you are a fan, I believe you will enjoy it very much. If you have absolutely no sense of humor, as it seems quite a few who have written comments about this movie are lacking just that, then don't bother with it either. I know when my husband and I saw it, the whole audience was roaring with laughter throughout the movie and my husband has informed me that he cannot wait for it to come out on DVD. It was a whole lot of fun to watch and I recommend it highly.
I rate Adam Sandler pretty highly as an actor: Punch Drunk Love and Spanglish are among my favourite films and he is excellent in both. Sadly, The Longest Yard utterly stifles this talent - and the talents of his co-stars, including Chris Rock, James Cromwell and William Fichtner - by entrusting the direction and script to witless cretins. I probably wouldn't have minded the litany of movie clichés if they hadn't been so wilfully and ineptly used. To make matters irredeemably worse, just about every ethnic and social male stereotype is kicked out onto the field for the delectation of their young white target audience. I haven't seen the original, but I'm willing to bet Burt came away from this remake ruing the direction popular cinema has taken since 1974.
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