Thursday, June 19, 2008

You Don't Laugh During The Zohan (very much)

I have never been a huge Adam Sandler movie, and I have to admit that this review is tainted with that existing bias. I have always thought his movies were full of half-developed humor, and this one is no exception. You watch it start a gag , you start to smile as it develops, and then suddenly they have moved on, and you realize they weren't laying out the groundwork for a great gag, but rather, that WAS the gag. That's all you get. Sometimes you laugh, but most of the time you just kinda-sorta smile.

Well, smiling's good, right? Not worth $9 and 2 hours in a theater, but if you have a Friday night free in a few months and you see this movie at the local Red Box, I say go ahead and rent it. You could do better, sure, but you could also do much worse.

Zohan is a former Mossad agent who fakes his own death so he can abscond himself off to New York City and fulfill his true life-long ambition of being a hairdresser who bangs fat old ladies in the backroom after making their hair silky-smooth. No, seriously, that's the plot. You're surprised? This comes from the guy who made a movie about an adult who finishes grade school, and a hockey player who becomes a golfer.

It's full of crotch jokes and sophomoric sexual humor. It has a few mediocre visual gags, lots of Jew-vs.-Arab humor (who knew that even existed?) and a lot of hummus jokes. In two hours, I laughed out loud maybe half a dozen times, smiled maybe a dozen more, and made an "ew" face three or four times, but never out-right vomited, although my gag reflex was triggered twice.

This movie offers nothing of redeeming value, but then again, neither does Guitar Hero, so I say you flip a coin to decide between the two when you have a free weekend evening without a date.

I give this a 5 on a scale of 1-to-10. And who knows, I could be totally off about its socially-redeeming value. Maybe the leaders of Hamas will sit down and watch this with the Israeli Prime Minister, and in laughing and not quite puking together, they will see the foibles of their rocky relationship, and come together in the name of peace. Probably not, but what do I know? All I do is review movies.

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