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I Now Pronounce You Unfunny & Misguided

I Now Pronounce You Unfunny & Misguided

Note: My buddy Molly wrote this review because I was unable to attend the screening for the movie. Thanks, Molly!

I understand what I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry was getting at. I understand that the movie uses things like stereotypes and homophobic language for the purpose of pointing out that this sort of behavior is bad, but it just doesn’t work. The movie can't decide whether it wants to play up these caricatures for laughs or legitimately try to have a message. In the end, it succeeds at neither.

The premise of the movie is simple (just suspend logic): Chuck and Larry are NYC firefighters. Chuck Levine (Adam Sandler) is the ladies man while Larry (Kevin James) is the devoted father with the deceased wife. Not wanting to deal with his wife's passing, Larry avoids filling out his pension paperwork for too long, thereby missing the window during which he can make his kids, rather than his wife, his next of kin. Obviously, to get around the system, he decides to “marry” Chuck so that if something happened to Larry, Chuck would be the one in charge of making sure the money got to the kids. At no point does it occur to Larry that he and Chuck are literally side-by-side in all the fires, so if something horrible happened to one there's a good chance it would affect both. Just saying.

Chuck and Larry have no intention of ever living together or pretending to be a couple more than on paper, but when city officials become suspicious about their set up, they have to put on a show — very much against their will. Jessica Biel is Alex McDonough, the lawyer Chuck and Larry hire to help them make sure they prove to the officials that they are a legitimate gay couple. Naturally Adam Sandler falls in love with her, complicating things. But you can gather all that from the preview. To hear what I thought about the film just

The movie may be trying to point out homophobic behavior as evil, but there’s still not a single straight male in the movie who doesn’t find it repulsive. In fact, just the suggestion of a homosexual kiss is apparently so sickening that it must result in a manly display of violence. It's both scary and irresponsible to perpetuate the notion that homosexuality needs to be counteracted with violence. Not only that, but there are no homosexual characters who aren't exactly like every other mainstream portrayal of gay men. If having to make all gay characters easy to digest because they're so over the top is the best we can do in terms of fighting homophobia, how far have we come?

After all of those gripes, there are moments that are sweet and moments that are funny. Adam Sandler, misguided as he may have been in this movie, is endearing. However, the fact that one of the main tenants of the movie is that Adam Sandler is this insane ladies man is a bit ridiculous. Adam can play the boyishly handsome heartthrob, but the hunk? That’s a bit of a stretch. Meanwhile, Kevin James has perfected his performance of the lovably inept buffoon. Jessica Biel, though playing a painfully naive character, is mostly harmless. I just wish her character were something more than just a hot body. Dan Akroyd is one of the best — and most underused — characters in the movie, while Rob Schneider, playing the Asian officiant at their wedding is unnecessary and embarrassing to watch. Of course, most of what Schneider does comes off that way, but this is particularly bad.

I would love to say that I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry perfectly towed the line between hilarious and heartwarming. I would love to say that the message spoke loud and clear. I would love to say this, because I truly like all the actors (Schneider notwithstanding). Unfortunately, this movie just left me feeling sad, and not even for the reasons I originally thought. I was sad because even when the filmmakers thought they were conveying a message about homophobia and prejudices, it was glaringly obvious how far we still are from getting it right.


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lickety-split lickety-split 8 years
i rented this today. and while i wasn't expecting much i had to turn it off afer about 40 minutes because it was offensive. also unoriginal; the fat guy falling on top of someone offered as humor, of course the squished persons face is directly under the fat persons ass and then the expected fart in the face is also suggested as funny, kids using phrases like "that bastard" the way an adult would. most of the gags were telegraphed. should have read the reviews.
BETTYROCKETS BETTYROCKETS 8 years
well i know this movie this already out of theaters but i think the review madde some sense. but it was not all that bad. i absolutely love adam sandler and all his moviea and gang of followers in each of his movies.you have to have sense of humor to enjoy this movie. so personally i think it was great!
kris32x kris32x 8 years
i'm not the one who said politics had anything to do with it. THE REVIEW DID. and saying someone has a political agenda doesn't equal bashing them. its an opinion. making personal attacks? bashing. why can't you see that no matter what someone's political beliefs they are entitled to their opinion without a slew of people telling them "you have bad taste in films." It's arrogant to act like you are the only person whose opinion matters. guess what..you are ONE out of 6 billion. "get over it"
tralalala tralalala 8 years
kris32x, offending someone posting comments about a movie review, and offending an entire group of people who've been persecuted since pretty much the beginning of time, is kind of apples and oranges. And for the record, before you go off saying I'm the only one bashing people, I'm not the one who went on a rant about the reviewer's political agenda. It's a bad movie, politics have nothing to do with it. Get over it.
Mainly-Obsessed Mainly-Obsessed 8 years
kris, not to offend or intrude, but who's to say we ARE all adults here...this is the internet (for all you know I could be 12...). Catfights are easier here because whoever you piss off won't come after you (which makes the web one of the best places to vent don't you think?). And I think everyone should drop the political debate. You won't change anyone's mind just by leaving angry comments. My take - on this whole review business - The movie wasn't critically great. Accept it, those of you who say it was a good movie. (Critically, meaning reviewed by critics who do this for a living). Just because it's not exactly Oscar material doesn't mean it won't be funny to some portion of the audience. That's what movies like this are meant to do.
kris32x kris32x 8 years
actually, its comical how you are concerned with offending the gay community but you could care less about offending others in this discussion.
kris32x kris32x 8 years
"Don't try to bash someone's political views just because you have bad taste in films." Really mature, tralala. You seem to be the only one doing the bashing. I'm glad to see we are all adults here. Everyone's entitled to their opinion and we shouldn't stoop to using catty and insulting personal attacks just because we don't like what someone is saying.
pretty_brunette pretty_brunette 8 years
the movie was oke
crocketp crocketp 8 years
Wow, what a horrible review!! I just came from seeing this movie and thought it was hilarious and great! I don't take "reviews" seriously. If I did, I would have missed out on a lot of great movies. This movie is a comedy, it does have a message, and was delightful. I would recommend it.
nyaradzom2001 nyaradzom2001 8 years
I'm still gonna watch it cos it doesn't take itself seriously and all the funny movies are the ones with the hideous reviews, the well reviewed ones are usually lame.
tralalala tralalala 8 years
Honey, the 14% is the rating this movie has on rotten tomatoes. Like I said, lower than the president. and his is pretty low. If you're anti liberal views, watch Fox and stop complaining.
jeway jeway 8 years
i saw the movie last night & i thought it was good.
kcreson kcreson 8 years
very nice review... Ill prob still see it but will keep your thoughts in the back of my mind.
demonkitty18 demonkitty18 8 years
most of adam sandler's movies arent exactly known for their great stories or drama or anythin, just his humour so I think I'll still give it a shot cuz I like him. Great review tho as usual, I usually decide if a movie is worth watching based on your opinion because you're always spot on. :)
kh61582 kh61582 8 years
I'm not saying it's a good movie. I haven't seen it and I could care less whether it's good or bad. Personally I don't like Adam Sandler so it's easy to imagine that it is a bad movie. I simply object to every single critic bashing the movie because it doesn't portray the gay culture the way they want it to. By the way, you might want to get your facts straight, that 14% approval rating is the rating for Congress, which has a Democrat majority. The Presidents ratings are somewhere in the low 20s. For the record, I'm not crazy about President Bush but I also don't appreciate having to subject myself to liberal views because that's what the mainstream media tells me is right.
esk4 esk4 8 years
I saw it yesterday and thought it was an alright movie, it was pretty funny. I even saw it with a gay friend of mine who loved it... But idk, we went in expecting it to be nothing more than it was, sooo maybe thats the difference, its not ment to be taken so seriously...
tralalala tralalala 8 years
kh61582, there's a difference between non-pc and offensive. Example; a few gay jokes during a movie, hell, throw in some black jokes or jew jokes, women's rights jokes or even catholic jokes= still potential to be funny. Base an entire movie around a gay joke= offensive. Don't try to bash someone's political views just because you have bad taste in films. And by the way, check out rotten tomatoes. This movie has a 14% approval rating. That's lower than the president... It's kind of sad. Compare that to movies like Hairspray which has a 94%, and Sunshine with 75%.
lorenashley lorenashley 8 years
movies are not cheap. i'm glad i read the review before i saw it.
pinkflats pinkflats 8 years
The reason why I like reading reviews because I want to know if the movie is worth spending $10 in the movies and most of the times Buzz always gets it right. Well in this case Molly got it right. (Having read so many reviews by Buzz and getting some kind of idea on what movie she likes or dislikes, I can say that she would be expressing the same thing Molly). Good review.
Aminah-Akalea Aminah-Akalea 8 years
I loveeeee Adam Sandler and Jessica Biel!! i dont be bothered with reviews, and anyone who listens to them and judge a pic without seeing it is ignorant, what might not be for them may be for me, something i'll enjoy or find funny, we're alll different, dont dislike just because someone else is doing the same, go see if you like it, dont judge something by what other say. If it sucks it sucks if its great that's better, atleast you get to judge for yourself. Well if you arent a fan of anyone of them in movies its up to you, whatever,but if you are a fan of someone and want to go and see the movie go ahead, make your own decisions.
lorenashley lorenashley 8 years
omg kh6 please stop it. great review molly. i am not surprised it's not all that great.
kh61582 kh61582 8 years
Well Molly it's pretty obvious that you're a liberal. I have gay friends and I'm not the least bit homophobic however it's terrible that you people expect every movie to be politically correct. Every age group, race, and sexual orientation has a stereotype and nearly every mainstream movie caters to those but we don't raise a red flag unless it's about gays or women or African Americans (aka basically every group that is predominantly liberal). I'm going to see this movie tomorrow and maybe after I see it I might agree with you. Who knows? All I'm saying is that if you weren't so uptight and had gone into this movie just expecting to laugh and not obsessed over a political agenda you might have liked the movie.
Linda-McP Linda-McP 8 years
Great review, Molly. I'm really not an Adam Sandler fan; I'm more convinced now that this is a film I'll be skipping.
karisaamy karisaamy 8 years
I think the best part of this movie may be the review
rhymeswithkenny rhymeswithkenny 8 years
great insight. this review may be funnier than the actual movie.
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