Surprise! "Jack and Jill" Is Only Half As Bad As It Looks

Surprise!  "Jack and Jill" Is Only Half As Bad As It Looks

JACK AND JILL

Genre: Comedy?

Premise: Identical twin brother and sister (Adam Sandler) reconnect at Thanksgiving after the death of their mother.  Jack tries to woo Al Pacino (playing himself) for a Dunkin' Donuts commercial, while Pacino, smitten with love, tries to woo Jill.

Behind-the-Scenes: Sandler taps a few of his celebrity buddies to make some fun cameos: Regis, Johnny Depp, David Spade, Jared the Subway Guy, Drew Carey, and more.

The Good:  It's not as bad as everything you've read and/or seen so far might suggest.  Sandler throws in a couple of random, non-sensical running gags that harken back to the good 'ol Sandler films of yore.  A few of the choice bits: Jack's adopted son likes to tape everything to himself.  An ancient, one-toothed granny at a Mexican family picnic gets repeatedly bashed in the head...and revived by stuffing her mouth full of chili peppers.  Pacino is admirably game for the movie and commits fully.  Depp wears a Bieber t-shirt.  Jill accidentally destroys Pacino's Best Actor Oscar and they have this exchange:   Jill: "I'm sorry.  You have others, right?"  Pacino: "You'd think, but no."

The Bad:  The high concept proves way too high for this lazy crew of comic jesters.  Sandler manages to make Jill a real, empathetic character at times, but he completely phones it in as Jack, a giant douchebag of a character.  The plotting is inane - why begin the movie with a climactic dinner scene? - and there are way too many cheap fart jokes.  After setting half of Just Go With It in Hawaii, Sandler gives himself another vacation that we all get to pay for by setting a large chunk of the last third of this movie aboard a luxury cruise.

Should You See It?:  Depends.  If you still like Sandler at all, I would at least check it out when it hits DVD.  We laughed out loud about 4-5 times, which is more than I can say for other comedies I've had to sit through this year.  Hey, it's more entertaining than J. Edgar...

Rating: **1/2 out of 5 stars.

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