VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Grown Ups 2 (2013)

Clint: 4/5 stars, 8/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 7/10.
Native ratings: 3.8/5 stars Netflix, /10 IMDB.

Clint’s thoughts: I don’t know why the fuck this became a franchise, but look! They took something not so good and greatly improved upon it. Much better than the original. Less family stuff, and more jokes.

Carolyn’s thoughts:  This was funnier than the original.  It wasn’t made up of them just razzing each other the whole entire time.  The jokes were better and more structured.  It was a pleasant surprise that this was better, as we were expecting a lot worse since sequels generally don’t live up to the originals.  I see they added another writer who had worked on more of Adam Sandler’s older movies, so maybe that contributed to the improvement.

Directed by Dennis Dugan (You Don’t Mess with the Zohan, Happy Gilmore, Big Daddy, Problem Child, Just Go With It, Jack And Jill).  Written by Adam Sandler & Fred Wolf (Without A Paddle, SNL) & Tim Herlihy (SNL, Billy Madison, Happy Gilmore, The Wedding Singer, The Waterboy, Big Daddy, Little Nicky, Mr. Deeds).  Maybe the addition of that last writer made the difference between how much better this movie was than the first…

Starring the same people from the previous movie:
Adam Sandler as Lenny Feder.
Salma Hayek as Roxanne Chase-Feder.
Chris Rock as Kurt McKenzie.
David Spade as Marcus Higgins.
Rob Schneider as Rob Hilliard.
Steve Buscemi as Wiley.
Kevin James (50 First Dates, uncredited in You Don’t Mess With The Zohan) as Eric Lamonsoff.
Maria Bello (Thank You For Smoking, Coyote Ugly, Shattered) as Sally Lamonsoff.
Maya Rudolph (Saturday Night Live, Shrek 3, Idiocracy, 50 First Dates, Wake Up, Ron Burgundy: The Lost Movie, Gattaca, 1 ep of The Simpsons) as Deanne McKenzie.
Ebony Jo-Ann (Kate & Leopold) as Mama Ronzoni.
Colin Quinn (Saturday Night Live, 1 ep of The Larry Sanders Show, 3 Men & A Baby) as Dickie Bailey, the enemy rival.
Tim Meadows (Saturday Night Live, Mean Girls 2, Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, Coneheads, 5 eps of Bob’s Burgers, 2 eps of The Life & Times Of Tim, 1 ep of The Venture Bros. as Malcolm, the rival black guy.

New faces:
Jon Lovitz as Squats Fitness Janitor.
Taylor Lautner (Jacob from the Twilight movies) Frat Boy Andy (uncredited). He seemed to have a pretty big part for someone who was uncredited…. Oh, someone in the imdb forum said he did this movie for free…
Nick Swardson (Grandma’s Boy, Just Go With It, The House Bunny, Blades Of Glory, Click, 1 ep of The Human Giant) as Nick.
Shaquille O’Neal (the basketball player, Scary Movie 4, Smurfs 2) as Officer Fluzoo.
Alexander Ludwig (The Hunger Games) as Braden, David Spade’s son.
Georgia Engel (Mary Tyler Moore, 14 eps of Everybody Loves Raymond, 4 eps of The Love Boat, 2 eps of The Office, 2 eps of Mork & Mindy, 1 ep of Unsupervised) as Mrs. Lamonsoff, Eric’s mom.
Peter Dante (Just Go With It, Grandma’s Boy, Mr. Deeds, Big Daddy, The Waterboy, Little Nicky, The Wedding Singer, 3 eps of The Larry Sanders Show) as Officer Dante.
Oliver Hudson (100 eps of Rules Of Engagement) as Kyle.
Allen Covert (Soul Patch in Just Go With It, Grandma’s Boy, 50 First Dates, Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, The Wedding Singer, The Waterboy, Airheads) as Hippie Teacher.
Steve Austin (the wrestler, Celebrity Deathmatch) as Tommy Cavanaugh.
Milo Ventimiglia (Peter Petrelli in Heroes, Wolverine in the English version of Wolverine) as Frat Boy Milo.

Missing:
Rob Schneider and his family

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2191701/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Grown Ups 1 (2010)

Claire: 2.8/5 stars, 5.4/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 6/10.
Native ratings: 3.7/5 stars Netflix, 5.8/10 IMDB.

This movie did not live up to its potential, and also got kind of family-lamey. Familelamey. Familamey.

Good cast, but they’ve gotten older, started doing familamey movies, and just got more familamey. It’s not even slightly as good as what would have happened if you’d put this cast in a similar movie 10 or 15 years ago. And family movies can still be funny, anyway! The Fockers trilogy, for example.  But this one just got too sentimental, with too many pullings of strings related to kids, having kids, blah fucking blah fucking blah blah fucking blah.

Carolyn’s thoughts:  If you want to watch a movie about people getting older and dealing with families, then watch This Is 40 and skip this one. [Editors note: Carolyn rated both movies 3/5 stars on Netflix, but rated This Is 40 7/10 on IMDB, vs 6/10 for this film] [Claire rated This Is 40 3.2 & 7.2]

Directed by Dennis Dugan (You Don’t Mess with the Zohan, Happy Gilmore, Big Daddy, Problem Child, Just Go With It, Jack And Jill). Written by Adam Sandler & Fred Wolf (Without A Paddle, SNL).

Starring Adam Sandler as Lenny Feder.
Salma Hayek as Roxanne Chase-Feder.
Chris Rock as Kurt McKenzie.
David Spade as Marcus Higgins.
Rob Schneider as Rob Hilliard.
Steve Buscemi as Wiley.
Kevin James (50 First Dates, uncredited in You Don’t Mess With The Zohan) as Eric Lamonsoff.
Maria Bello (Thank You For Smoking, Coyote Ugly, Shattered) as Sally Lamonsoff.
Maya Rudolph (Saturday Night Live, Shrek 3, Idiocracy, 50 First Dates, Wake Up, Ron Burgundy: The Lost Movie, Gattaca, 1 ep of The Simpsons) as Deanne McKenzie.
Joyce Van Patten (Unhappily Ever After, 1 ep of The Sopranos, 1 ep of Oz, she’s been around since the ’50s.) as Gloria.
Ebony Jo-Ann (Kate & Leopold) as Mama Ronzoni.
Di Quon (Maid In Manhattan) as Rita, the nanny.
Colin Quinn (Saturday Night Live, 1 ep of The Larry Sanders Show, 3 Men & A Baby) as Dickie Bailey, the enemy rival.
Tim Meadows (Saturday Night Live, Mean Girls 2, Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, Coneheads, 5 eps of Bob’s Burgers, 2 eps of The Life & Times Of Tim, 1 ep of The Venture Bros. as Malcolm, the rival black guy.
Madison Riley (Fired Up, Miss March, Without A Paddle 2) as Jasmine Hilliard, super fucking hot daughter #1.
Jamie Chung (The Hangover 2-3, Sucker Punch, Dragonball: Evolution) as Amber Hilliard, super fucking hot daughter #2.
Ashley Loren as Bridget Hilliard, not hot daughter?

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1375670/combined

VIDEO: Just Go With It (2011)

Claire: 3.3/5 stars, 7.2/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 7/10.
Native ratings: 3.8/5 stars Netflix, 6.3/10 IMDB.

Claire’s thoughts: It was a pretty funny movie. Nothing super, but high quality for a generic rom-com. Not the peak work of anyone in it, but a good cast nonetheless.  It felt like it was written by NBC sitcom writers, who absolutely loved plots revolving around everyone lying an unrealistic amount. That was points against. But the difference between this and and NBC sitcom is that the joke goes on for about 5.5X as long. Things do start to get predictable and formulaic in act 3 — which is expected in a rom-com — but the movie is almost 2 hours, so the comedy survives as long as a typical comedy movie before it putters out into the inevitable romance-genre ending all rom-coms have.

Carolyn’s thoughts: Entertaining.  Not spectacular.  It was no Click, 50 First Dates, or Wedding Singer, but it was decent.

Directed by Dennis Dugan (You Don’t Mess With The Zohan, Saving Silverman, Big Daddy, Happy Gilmore, also an actor in a shitton of shows & movies).  Written by Allan Loeb (Rock Of Ages) and Timothy Dowling (Role Models, George Lucas In Love).

Starring Adam Sandler as Danny Maccabee, Jennifer Aniston as Katherine Murphy, Nicole Kidman as Devlin Adams, and Kevin Nealon as Adon.
Nick Swardson (Grandma’s Boy, You Don’t Mess With The Zohan, The House Bunny, Blades Of Glory, Click) as Eddie, Danny’s cousin.
Brooklyn Decker as Palmer, the young love interest.
Bailee Madison (1 ep of Holliston) as Maggie / Kiki Dee, Katherine’s daughter.
Griffin Gluck (Sideways, 1 ep of The Office) as Michael / Bart, Katherine’s son.
Dave Matthews (You Don’t Mess With The Zohan) as Ian Maxtone Jones, Devlin’s husband.
Allen Covert (Grandma’s Boy, 50 First Dates, Deuce Bigalow:Male Gigolo, The Wedding Singer, The Waterboy, Airheads) as Soul Patch.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1564367/combined