It’s four years into Adam Sandler’s Netflix partnership that has seen him double his original deal from four to eight films. While the first three, The Ridiculous 6, The Do-Over and Sandy Wexler, were very underwhelming, despite their fairly recognizable casts, his fourth attempt, and only release separate from his deal, The Meyerowitz Stories proved to be one of Sandler’s greatest films. Optimistically things should be getting better right?
Synopsis: When two very different fathers (Adam Sandler and Chris Rock) come together for their children’s wedding, everything that could go wrong, does. Watch the hilarious hijinks as the two try to keep everything afloat, while dealing with their families…and each other. Before they get to the big day, they have to go through a long week. (Netflix)
Starring: Adam Sandler, Chris Rock and Steve Buscemi
Writers: Adam Sandler and Robert Smigel
Director: Robert Smigel
Running Time: 116mins
The Week Of plays like more of the same as Sandler continues to be the typical loud-mouthed family man in a film that should work well like most Sandler/Rock collaborations in the past. The story follows the frantic, disastrous week before a young couple’s wedding as the middle-class father of the bride Kenny Lustig (Sandler) finds himself constantly belittled by the successful father of the groom Kirby (Rock). Things become increasingly stressful as the father of the bride begins boarding up relatives from both families in his small Long Island home while new problems rise at every turn.
In a film that boasts the least recognizable cast of the bunch, Sandler and Rock seem to be bored as they deliver bland performances compared to their long resumes. Their interactions are void of emotion or humour as these two seem to be the least interested in this story of the bunch. Sandler’s Kenny, a father who will do anything to pay for his daughter’s wedding, is constantly butting heads with Rock’s Kirby and his desire to take over and save the day, but their power struggle never really hits a boiling point and never gives these actors a chance to bring this story to the sentimental level it could reach. The story of a lovable father letting go of his daughter paired with a father’s realization of his family’s distaste for him do not work well with Sandler’s style of comedy.
Thankfully some of supporting cast are able to deliver a few laughs, particularly Kenny’s grand-uncle Seymour, a double-amputee war veteran, Noah, an autistic teenager with a long list of triggers and some of Kirby’s extended family. Beyond that the families are less than memorable. And that is due to a very dull, uneventful script that borrows from various films like Father of the Bride, Wedding Singer, The In-Laws, Meet the Parents and My Big Fat Greek Wedding. The story feels like a group of ridiculous comedy sketches stitched together with boring talking head scenes and a few heartfelt ones to drag out a very long, tiresome week.
Overall, The Week Of is a drawn out comedy that never quite hits its mark with its comedic moments or sentimental message. Rather than bring anything new to the wedding genre, it plays these comparisons for cheap laughs and cringe-worthy moments in a terribly paced and repetitive story that makes you question by the end of its long runtime: what did I just watch? This film almost feels like a story worth caring about, but then any emotion it builds is lost on outlandish attempts at humour.
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