While in his teens, Donny fathered a son, Todd, and raised him as a single parent up until Todd's 18th birthday. Now, after not seeing each other for years, Todd's world comes crashing down when Donny resurfaces just before Todd's wedding.
After moving his family back to his hometown to be with his friends and their kids, Lenny finds out that between old bullies, new bullies, schizo bus drivers, drunk cops on skis, and 400 costumed party crashers sometimes crazy follows you.
Jack Sadelstein is a successful advertising executive in Los Angeles with a beautiful wife and kids, who dreads one event each year: the Thanksgiving visit of his identical twin sister Jill. Jill's neediness and passive-aggressiveness is maddening to Jack, turning his normally tranquil life upside down. Written by
Al Pacino, appearing as a fictionalized version of himself, is shown playing Richard III on stage. In reality, Pacino directed and starred in a documentary about the making of a production of Richard III entitled 'Looking for Richard'. See more »
The rear view mirrors have been removed from Jack's Escalade and Felipe's truck. See more »
After the credits, one member of the previously shown twins conducts a sight gag. He 'inflates' his stomach to a noticeably larger size. He than pantomimes using a large pin to 'pop' his stomach, deflating it to normal size. See more »
Is it me, or are Adam Sandler movies getting stupider with each passing one? Oh sure, Sandler's sense of humor has been pretty dumb from the beginning, sometimes in an enjoyable way. But lately, his movies seem to be reaching for a lower form of humor than I even knew existed. I'm guessing it won't take long until we get a movie comprised of nothing but Sandler sitting on the toilet and belching for 90 minutes straight.
But, I'm here to talk about Jack and Jill, a stupefyingly dumb comedy that places Sandler in a dual role as both an uptight ad executive and family man, as well as his loud, obnoxious sister. The movie was a miscalculation from the start. Seeing Sandler dressed in drag and talking in a whiny voice probably would have been pushing it in a three minute sketch back in his Saturday Night Live days. In a 90 minute movie, the performance is excruciating. Was there no one around to stop him and tell him the performance, and the character in general, was just a bad idea? No one to say that it just wasn't funny? Seeing a movie like this makes you want to sit Sandler down, and make him watch his performances in Punch Drunk Love, Spanglish, Funny People, and Reign Over Me to remind him that he is so much better than this.
The plot (such as it is) concerns Jill (the sister) coming to visit her brother Jack and his family for Thanksgiving. She's only supposed to be there for a few days, but she extends her vacation time, and winds up staying almost to New Years. During that time, we get a lot of toilet humor (much more than a PG-rated comedy aimed at kids needs), a ton of product placements (How much did Dunkin' Donuts pay to get their brand worked into the plot of the movie? And would it have been better for business if they had just stayed out of the movie all together?), and a lot of celebrity cameos that include Sandler's friends, as well as some big names cashing a paycheck. The cameos in this film include David Spade (in drag, no less), Dana Carvey, Johnny Depp, Regis Philbin, John McEnroe, Shaquille O'Neal, Drew Carey, Christie Brinkley, and Bruce Jenner. Oh, and then there's Al Pacino.
Yes, I said Al Pacino. Only he's not making a cameo, he's a main supporting character. He plays a caricature of himself as a raving oddball who speaks gibberish in order to fool people he can speak other languages, and becomes inexplicably attracted to Jill when he happens to meet her at a basketball game. Jill has no interest in Pacino, but Jack's ad agency wants to hire the actor for a Dunkin' Donut campaign, so he tries to bring the two together. When Jill further resists, Jack is forced to dress up as his sister and be seduced by Pacino. But never mind. The important thing is Pacino gets the film's only laughs, because he tackles the material head-on and with full passion. He obviously knows this material is stupid, but he gives such an energetic performance, you sometimes find yourself laughing, even if what he says isn't that funny. Say what you will about his decision to appear in this movie, but he earns every cent of that paycheck when he appears in trash like this.
Outside of Pacino's off the wall performance, I can't say I laughed very much at Jack and Jill. The movie's just not that funny. Don't tell that to the guy who was sitting two rows behind me at my screening, though. Every tired pratfall, every loud fart that blasted on the soundtrack, and every knock to the head caused him to erupt in extremely loud fits of laughter, stomping of feet, and slapping his knees. I wanted to ask him what he found so funny about the movie. Most of all, I wanted to be enjoying myself as much as he was. That's obviously the intention of the movie. It wants to make us laugh and forget our problems for 90 minutes or so. That's admirable. But it fails on both counts. My guess as to the reaction of the man sitting behind me? He's been locked away somewhere for a very long time, and has never seen a movie in his life.
I won't go so far as to say that Jack and Jill is the worst comedy of the year, as there's much worse out there. But, it's certainly one of the most annoying. This is the kind of movie where the filmmakers started with the idea of Sandler playing brother and sister, and then stopped there, not developing the screenplay, characters, or the jokes. Considering that the initial idea wasn't that hot to start with, maybe they shouldn't have even gone as far as they did.
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