December 20, 2016
Review #887: Billy Madison.
Adam Sandler (Billy Madison), Darren McGavin (Brian Madison), Bridgette Wilson (Veronica Vaughn), Bradley Whitford (Eric Gordon), Josh Mostel (Principal Max Anderson), Norm Macdonald (Frank), Mark Beltzman (Jack), Larry Hankin (Carl Alphonse), and Theresa Merritt (Juanita) Directed by Tamra Davis.
Let me get this out of the way early: I don't like this movie. And yet somehow, this manages to be the kind of movie that is digestible, even if it is made of some sort of junk. Much like the other Sandler films done on this show (#045 - Just Go With It and #345 - Happy Gilmore), the gags miss more than they hit (at least for me anyway), though at least this one (like the latter listed) is watchable at 89 minutes. Sandler plays a character with some sort of idiocy that can be endearing, I suppose. I'm just not a fan of his kind of shtick, which just feels tired after a few minutes. McGavin is pretty endearing, probably more than Sandler, despite not having too much screen time. Whitford is somewhat enjoyable as the villain (in a snarky way), because it's like seeing a race for weirdest character, though he loses that to Mostel, playing a school principal...and a wrestler. They are occasionally funny, somehow. Sandler and Wilson have a chemistry (in that it is a word) that sort of helps the movie have some sort of human element. It isn't charming, but it is something. There is a plot, and at least it's one that doesn't hurt the senses. Obviously this isn't a movie for me (or anybody looking for some comedy without easy gags with varying levels of body humor), but I can't really get too worked up about it. Who am I to judge a movie about people who act like fools? The movie flows the way you'd expect, with lame gags and being about as harmless as someone with too much caffeine. Would I recommend it? Of course not. But I can't stop you.
Overall, I give it 5 out of 10 stars.