Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Fugly Five

You don't go see a movie like Grown Ups because you think it'll be good. You see it because you like the stars and you hope it'll be funny. Thankfully, you get what you pay for. Adam Sandler and his pals Kevin James, Rob Schneider, David Spade, and Chris Rock star as childhood friends who reunite (in "New England") for the funeral of their beloved basketball coach and decide to stay together with their families over the July 4th holiday at a scenic lake house. There's really no more plot than that. Good times and insults follow, as do other fellow former Saturday Night Live stars like Maya Rudolph, Colin Quinn, Tim Meadows, and, in a brief cameo, Norm MacDonald (plus Salma Hayek, Maria Bello, and Sandler movie mainstay Steve Buscemi).

Grown Ups is good-hearted fun, and it's the kind of easy-going movie that a high-minded, legitimate critic would hate. Thankfully, I can be easy to please sometimes, and I enjoyed hanging out with these guys for an hour and 45 minutes. It's like Sandler told his buddies, "Let's go up to Boston for the summer. We can hang out and make a movie." And they all agreed. Sure, I wish Chris Rock had more to do, and I wish the token conflicts weren't so lame and easily resolved. But scenes like when the gang heads to a water park and zips down the waterslides are so light and fun that you can't help but smile. I laughed a lot at Grown Ups, and even if some of the chuckles came too easily, I'm not complaining. That's all I wanted from this movie anyway. I'm giving Grown Ups a B.



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