Review: Bedtime Stories
Plot: When hotel handyman Skeeter Bronson (Adam Sandler) is left in charge of his sisterís two children, heís amazed to discover that the bedtime stories heís been entertaining them with have started to come true.
Review: BEDTIME STORIES is the quintessential Disney flick. Itís a slick product designed to pull in families, and make bundles of cash. Itís got everything a wannabe holiday blockbuster needs: a short running time, a popular leading man, elaborate special effects, and a strong undercurrent of sentimentality. It probably wonít impress anyone under twelve, but for what it is, itís not bad.
I think the reason BEDTIME STORIES works at all is mainly due to Sandler. While Iím nowhere near his biggest fan, heís always been likable, and thatís really all this film needs- a likable leading man. While he certainly doesnít stretch himself here, I liked him more in this film than in any of his recent comedies (except the surprisingly decent YOU DONíT MESS WITH THE ZOHAN). His works well with the two kids that play his niece and nephew, and I also thought he had pretty decent chemistry with Keri Russell, who plays the obligatory love interest.
Special note should also be made of Russell Brand, who I think is on the verge of superstardom. While a PG-rated, Adam Sandler/Disney film is probably not the best venue for his talent, he nonetheless steals every scene heís in. I particularly liked his odd sleeping disorder, which is the only part of the film I found genuinely funny.
I should also mention the fact that the filmmakers obviously spent some major coin on the numerous, special effects laden, BEDTIME STORIES of the title. Usually Sandlerís films are fairly low budget, so itís a bit odd seeing him mingle with elaborate CGI- but these scenes are fairly well done, if a tad bland.
Directed by Adam Shankman, who previously helmed the inexplicably popular THE PACIFIER & HAIRSPRAY, BEDTIME STORIES is really your typical Shankman film. Itís cute, and inoffensive, but itís a little too slick, and is basically cinematic junkfood. Kids will love it, and you may find yourself somewhat entertained by it, but afterwards youíll find it completely forgettable, and will yearn for something a little more satisfying. If youíre looking for a good family film, you can certainly do worse, but if youíre kids are a little older, you might want to consider taking them to see SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE instead, which is truly a film with something for everyone.
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