May 29, 2005

The Longest Yard

I saw Adam Sandler's remake of The Longest Yard tonight at the drive-in in the rain. One might think that the adverse viewing conditions would negatively affect my opinion of the film. While that may be true with good films, the fact that the night was an interesting and satisfying experience was the only thing that allowed me walk away content; in a movie theatre it would have been a much harsher reaction.
The villains are never threatening, the heroes never rise up to a point of real sympathy, and the character motivations never feel all that plausible. I'm sitting in my car and the movies playing out on the screen, and we're not really bothering each other all that much. It's not that it pushes out into reality like a Wes Anderson film does, it's that it never really makes any effort to draw you in. If this film were personified, it would be Shaun's fat best buddy in Shaun of the Dead. It's in no rush to do anything, and it's likeable enough that we don't so much mind when nothing serious ends up getting done.
It rises about movies like About Schmidt and Napoleon Dynamite in that it doesn't piss me off any. But that's probably because unlike those two, it never sets off to do anything all that intrusive in the first place. And having caught a whiff of a good movie in there somewhere, it has me inclined to see out the original. In that way, it has perhaps succeeded in something. ()

  - ADAM LENHARDT

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