Just Go With It Review: Don't Be that Guy
Just Go with It is based on a French play, a farce, that was made into a film called Cactus Flower, and if you know anything about farce, you know how absolutely horribly wrong Adam Sandler is for it. A good farce takes timing and wit and decent comedians to pull off, not some goddamn blonde who trots around in a bathing suit with a movie camera shoved in her cleavage. It takes a good director, like Neil Simon or Charles Crichton or Billy Wilder. Not Dennis Dugan, the genius behind You Don't Mess with the Zohan and I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry. This guy's directing from his hospital bed, where he's been in a coma since Big Daddy. He's a low-functioning imbecile, and along with Adam Sandler, has been riding on the bombastic fumes of the 90s for a decade now. The guy doesn't give a shit. He stands around, reads every other line loudly, picks up his fucking paycheck and goes home to watch his body double fuck his wife.
It's cynical, soulless filmmaking and Happy Madison has become the assembly line for it. Sandler lines up a fading star with some residual face recognition, calls up all his friends, finds a nice location, fucks around for three weeks, and pays an editor to splice together the best takes and score it to Police's greatest hits.That poor fucking monkey.
In Just Go With It, Sandler is Danny, a plastic surgeon, which allows him to spend the first half hour of the film making a lot of obvious plastic surgery jokes and bring in a woman with a deflated boob for laughs. He has a dating shtick he's been using for two decades: He pretends to be married and that his wife is abusive, and for whatever reason, women like Minka Kelly fall for it. All is well until he meets Palmer (Brooklyn Decker), a 23-year-old pair of breasts who he falls in love with. The problem is, she finds his fake wedding ring, assumes the worst, and instead of telling her that it's his dating strategy, Danny makes up a wife. That wife needs a face, and that face is Katherine's (Jennifer Aniston), his dowdy office assistant. Katherine undergoes a She's All That transformation (she takes off her glasses) and pretends to be Danny's soon-to-be ex-wife, which is fine and great and dandy until she lets it slip that she has kids. The dumb blonde assumes the children also belong to Danny, and voila! A family trip to Hawaii is set up, with the girlfriend, the soon-to-be ex-wife, her fake boyfriend, and the kids, one of whom pretends to be British and the other who shits a lot.
In fact, "shit" is a running joke in the film. Katherine calls "taking a dump" taking a "Devlin," which she names after an obnoxious sorority roommate she once had, who she inadvertently runs into in Hawaii (Nicole Kidman). Devlin is like a tit-in-the-wind with her husband (Dave Matthews), who invented the iPod, and in order to save face, Katherine pretends that she's in a fake marriage with Danny, which allows Dan Patrick to make another extended cameo, Dave Matthews to pick up a coconut with his ass, and the writers to pass up 100 different opportunities to make fun of Nicole Kidman's actual botched plastic surgery.
It's an agonizing, horrible, lazy, incompetent joyless movie. The performances are non-existent, save for Kidman's poor stabs at over-the-top humor. They stand on their marks and essentially improvise the phone book. Brooklyn Decker flashes a few smiles and wears a bikini while Sandler stands around with his tongue hanging out of his mouth until Aniston gets caught in his drool and everyone lives happily ever after, except anyone who is subjected to the results.
If you're one of those unfortunate souls who finds yourself standing in the ticket line over the weekend, next to a guy who looks up and says, "I'll take two for Just Go with It," it's time for you to move on. Walk away. Find someone who gives a shit about you, and not someone lazy enough to believe that allowing him to stare at Brooklyn Decker's breasts for two hours is a substitute for a romance.
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