Review: That's My Boy
PLOT: While barely in his teens, Donny Berger (Adam Sandler) fathered a child with his seventh grade teacher (Eva Amurri/Susan Sarandon). Now, grown up, the former Han Solo Berger, now Todd Peterson (Andy Samberg) is getting married, and wants nothing to do with his father, who rode a pathetic wave of fame to become a perpetually drunk forty-something that owes $43,000 to the IRS. Now, Donny needs Todd to participate in a televised reunion if he wants to stay out of jail-so he crashes his wedding party, and quickly turns his life inside out.
REVIEW: Boy oh boy- just when you thought Sandler couldnít get any worse, out comes THATíS MY BOY. I know some of his fans have been cautiously optimistic about this one, with many hoping Samberg might elevate the film a bit- not to mention the R-rating, but really- this is as bad as anything heís ever done.
For me, any film that hinges itís comedy on a sexual relationship between a twelve-year-old and an adult has pretty much lost me before the credits rolled- but while I thought the premise was in incredibly bad taste, I tried to roll with THATíS MY BOY. Like many of his more popular films, Sandler rides a bit of that late-eighties/ early nineties nostalgia wave- with a hair metal soundtrack, and lots of D-listers playing themselves. But, when the biggest laughs in the film come from Vanilla Ice (whoís surprisingly game at making fun of himself) - you know youíre in trouble.
THATíS MY BOY is pretty much the same, tired old comedy Sandlerís been putting out for decades now- albeit a more profane, R-rated version. But, THE HANGOVER this is not- as all the R-rating means is lots of gross-out comedy in the vein of other Happy Madison productions like BUCKY LARSON, mixed in with the typical heavy-handed dose of schmaltz that creeps up in the third-act.
For me, THATíS MY BOY was painful- bordering on excruciating. Everything is so protracted and obvious, that it seems like Sandler just got his writers to throw all of his other comedies into a blender to make this ďfilmĒ. Anyone wanna bet Sambergís bride, played by Leighton Meester is a total bitch? And OF COURSE sheís got a psycho ex-marine brother (Milo Ventimiglia- whoís gotten ripped since HEROES). And hey- thereís an old lady around. Anyone wanna bet sheíll end up having gross-out sex with Sandler?
Poor Samberg really seems to be at a loss here, as heís totally unsuited to play a straight-man, much less to someone like Sandler, not to mention Vanilla Ice, and even Todd Bridges. Will Forte injects a little life into the movie as Sambergís uptight buddy, but he canít even start to save this disaster, nor can gonzo casting such as Tony Orlando (Tony Orlando & Dawn yo!) as Sambergís foul-mouthed boss, or James Caan as a pugnacious Irish priest. I will admit however, casting mother & daughter Eva Amurri/Susan Sarandon as younger/older versions of Sandlerís teacher was clever if obvious.
Suffice to say, THATíS MY BOY is just another in a long line of shitty Sandler vehicles, and new blood like Samberg, director Sean Anders (SEX DRIVE), and DP Brandon Trost donít do much to elevate this from the level of JUST GO WITH IT (I will admit to having missed JACK & JILL).
|Extra Tidbit:||Using 'Rock of Ages' as over the studio logo was surprisingly brave, considering it's the competition this weekend.|