Thursday, August 05, 2004

Don't Date with "50 First Dates"

50 First Dates. (2004). Dir. Peter Segal. Perf. Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore, Rob Schneider, Sean Astin.

Rarely has a film with so much potential proven to be quite so appalling. 50 First Dates tells the story of Henry Roth (Sandler),a promiscuous Hawaiian vet with a fear of commitment whose boat dies one morning, leaving him subject to the whims and beautiful Hawaiian eyes of a young lady named Lucy (Barrymore) whom he meets in a diner. Shortly thereafter he learns that looks aren't everything: the object of his adoration won't remember him from one day to the next, leaving Roth struggling for ways to win her affections afresh each morning. Add to this Lucy's narcissistic and addicted younger brother and Roth's perverse bisexual coworker, and the resulting blend of tasteless humor weeds out many of the subtler moments of the story.

Fans of Sandler's crude taste will appreciate this film, but otherwise the plot contains an abundance of holes, worthless moments, and excessive lack of taste. The ending is perhaps the only redeeming part of the story, fortunately enough, but doesn't quite balance out the preceding ninety minutes of crass humor and idiocy. Blake Clark also puts in an excellent performance as Lucy's father, and while he may be in some ways the stereotypical father, he's also a very genuine and loving one, played with grace and softness in a film that seems to thrive on stilted and cheesy moments.

No comments: