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Grown Ups: How low can they go? Just watch

From left, Kurt (Chris Rock), Eric (Kevin James) with a KFC bucket on his head, Rob (Rob Schneider), Marcus (David Spade), Lenny (Adam Sandler) in Columbia Pictures' Grown Ups

Tracy Bennett

1 out of 4 stars


Grown Ups

  • Directed by Dennis Dugan
  • Written by Adam Sandler and Fred Wolf
  • Starring Adam Sandler, Chris Rock, Kevin James
  • Classification: PG

The last time he graced the big screen, in Funny People, Adam Sandler played a literally sick comic who hates not just himself but Adam Sandler movies too - yep, all those high-grossing, low-grade yuk fests that had made him very rich. Now, after that brief time out for a breath of honesty, Adam is back to lining his pockets again. No need to dwell on the thing, except to say that the grown-ups who will love Grown Ups must also love this:

  • Five relatively smart comedians - Sandler, Chris Rock, Kevin James, David Spade and (okay, cut me some slack here) Rob Schneider - dumbing way down to play the usual gaggle of middle-aged goofballs, lobbing gags they surely disdain at an audience they probably despise while reserving their own laughter for that off-camera dash all the way to the bank.
  • Said goofballs gather their families for a reunion in a rustic cottage by a quiet lake, where they soon get down to a game of "arrow roulette": Shoot the pointy thing straight up in the air, watch it plunge down to pierce an unsuspecting foot. Repeat.
  • Foot humour redux. An old, fat black woman removes her sensible brogues to reveal a vast outcropping of fungal growth, prompting this escalating trio of jibes: (1) "I didn't know the Elephant Man lived in your shoe"; (2) "Would you like bunion rings with that?"; (3) "Toe J. Simpson."
  • A requisite climb up the anatomy for the always popular fart joke, the blast provided by the same old, fat black woman. Blame it on the dog. Repeat.
  • A deft switch to the urinary tract. A guy takes a leak from a canoe; other guys comment on the sad decline of his once-potent stream. Later, all five guys take their sad declines to a swimming pool, where their collective relief stains the water (and their comedy) a Crayola shade of blue.
  • Fat humour redux. A tubby fellow on water skis signals the driver of the boat to gun it. Engine roars, boat doesn't move.
  • Close-up of dog poo. Medium shot of man's face falling in slow motion toward the dog poo. Splat. Repeat.
  • More anatomical delights. Aforementioned middle-aged goofballs peek longingly at the taut behind of a teenage girl. The scene requires the peepers to feel guilty, clearly a feat of acting far beyond the range of this group.
  • The comely wife of one middle-aged goofball casually exposes a breast to feed her thirsty son. Her thirsty four-year old son. Repeat and repeat and repeat.
  • The certain knowledge that, in the eyes of the grown-ups who made Grown Ups, we at the box office are that four-year-old kid, permanently infantilized and indiscriminately hungry.

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