Blu-ray Review: “Grown Ups 2” Should Be Beaten To Death


Review by James McDonald

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.

“Happy Gilmore” is my favorite Adam Sandler movie. I even liked “The Wedding Singer”, it had heart and two enigmatic leads in Sandler and Drew Barrymore. I even liked Sandler’s serious turn in Paul Thomas Anderson’s “Punch Drunk Love.” It proves that with the right script and the right director, Sandler can make a damn fine movie and give a very credible and believable performance. I missed out on “Grown Ups” back in 2010 and if “Grown Ups 2” is anything to go by, then I’m relieved beyond words. When I review a movie, even the really bad ones, I always like to give the filmmakers the benefit of the doubt and hope that somewhere in the movie, someone, something, ANYTHING, will redeem the entire film.

As an independent filmmaker myself, I know what goes into making a movie and the hardships involved but in the case of “Grown Ups 2”, there is absolutely nothing redeemable or forgivable whatsoever. What’s even harder to excuse, is that Sandler, who also produces the film, has assembled an eclectic cast including Kevin James, Chris Rock, David Spade along with Salma Hayek, Maria Bello, Maya Rudolph and Steve Buscemi. You would think with a cast like this that at least one of them could give something memorable, you know, like, a performance? Even scene-stealing Buscemi, who is excellent in “Boardwalk Empire”, is embarrassing to watch and that’s something I thought I’d never say out loud.

There is no coherent story line whatsoever. The entire event is a plot-less picture that provides its audience with a deplorable multitude of scenes that seem more like throwaway parodies from Saturday Night Live. It’s a redundant, laundry-list of ridiculous set-ups with unfunny payoffs that usually involve something along the lines of toilet gags, homophobia and loathsome behavior. In other words, it’s what makes an Adam Sandler movie these days. And that’s a shame. “Happy Gilmore” told the story of a young man trying to raise money so his grandmother’s house wouldn’t have to go to the IRS and it had humor, sentiment and heart. “Grown Ups 2” is about farting, burping, puking, old naked guys showing their penises and, well, you get the picture. But, and I must stress, BUT, if that’s your thing, then please, then knock yourself out.

In stores November 5th


James McDonald
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