Film: Same Sandler, different film

Title – Just Go With It

Director: Dennis Dugan

Starring: Adam Sandler, Jennifer Aniston, Nicole Kidman, Nick Swardson

Release Date: 11th February

Just Go With It is a rather indecisive creature. To a point, it’s your typical Adam Sandler film (ie. silly voices, crude slapstick, he gets hit in crotch a few times) but to its credit, there is some clever dialogue and genuinely funny scenes.

Just Go With It suffers from trying to be a film for teens/adults as well as a family-friendly movie, which rarely works if the filmmakers are anyone other than Pixar. This marketing identity crisis results in the film never fully committing to one audience or the other, trying to appease both but failing to thoroughly satisfying either.

The film centers around Sandler’s character, who realises he can pull women by pretending to be married to an abusive wife, thus having one night stands with women in their mid-twenties and never having to get his heart broken. All goes to plan until he finds the woman of his dreams, and through a mix up and a series of painfully contrived events, ends up having to pretend his assistant and best friend, Jennifer Aniston, is his soon to be ex-wife.

To the films credit, Sandler and Aniston have a very believable and watchable on-screen chemistry, however one’s suspension of disbelief does take a hard knock from the fact that Sandler’s character is supposedly a renowned plastic surgeon. While it doesn’t quite top Denise Richards as a nuclear physicist (only in a Bond film), the only purpose it seems to serve is to explain why he has so much money and to facilitate some more childish, Sandler-humour.

When the film does embrace the “A” of its 12A rating, it can be quite funny and it’s hard to shake the feeling that if someone other than Sandler had been cast, the more childish elements would be significantly reduced. Yet the casting is one of the films strongest points, special mention to Nicole Kidman for a rather good comic performance, and one rather ludicrous sequence involving Swardson and a sheep that was almost a genuine laugh-out-loud (lol) moment.

It doesn’t seem fair to call the film bad, as it has many funny moments, but it is in no way exceptional and a lot of it simply falls flat.

In a Nutshell: Horribly contrived, predictable and rather confused as to what kind of film it wants to be, but still a perfectly perfunctory Saturday-night popcorn film.