Isn’t this exactly the kind of movie Adam Sandler was ragging on in Funny People?
Since there’s apparently nothing funnier than a comedian in a fat suit and a dress, Sandler’s venture into Big Momma's House territory is just fucking appalling, even by the half-assed standards of Happy Madison productions. It’s the worst Adam Sandler picture yet, which is saying something.
Horribly directed by comedic menace Dennis Dugan, Jack and Jill finds Sandler starring as both a successful Los Angeles television commercial director, as well has his bovine twin sister, who leaves massive sweat-stains on the bed when she sleeps and speaks in a grating sketch-comedy voice. Jack is a surly, unpleasant careerist who routinely ignores his family, and it’s hard to miss the blanket contempt for the audience oozing out of Sandler’s lazy, passive-aggression. Jill comes to visit for Thanksgiving and then stays straight through the holidays, trampling all over any notions of good taste or well-constructed scene work.
Somewhere in the midst of all this shit, for no discernible reason, arrives Al Pacino, playing himself as a lonely horndog with the hots for Sandler in drag. Hoo-ha-ing his way into grotesque self-parody, Pacino presumably must have gotten jealous when he saw pal Bobby DeNiro’s Fockers paychecks. Sending up all his famous Godfather and Scarface lines, Pacino disgraces his legacy and then some—even answering his cell phone during an onstage performance of Richard III.
As usual for a Sandler production, the movie doubles as a welfare house for the comic’s under-employed pals. David Spade, Nick Swardson, Tim Meadows, Norm MacDonald and Dana Carvey drift through, seemingly in search of the craft services table for a free lunch. Distracting cameos abound, cluttering the frame with everyone from John McEnroe, the ShamWow guy, to even that Subway sandwich dude who used to be fat.
I will say that casting himself as a TV ad-man was an inspired choice, allowing Sandler to “seamlessly” integrate about a hundred bazillion product placements. I’m afraid I made a spectacle of myself clenching the armrests in horror when the movie stops dead in its tracks, so that Michael Corleone can rap a commercial for Dunkin Donuts. Yes, folks—Pacino raps a commercial for “Dunk-acino.”
“Nobody can ever see this,” the actor later growls. “You must burn every copy.”
I couldn’t agree more.
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