Jack and Jill Review
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Like coffee or beer or Marmite, Adam Sandler is an acquired taste—the kind of thing that takes determination, training, and a strong stomach. Over the years, though, my dad and I have both grown to love Sandler’s particular brand of insanity—so when Dad just happened to be in town for the screening of Sandler’s latest, Jack and Jill, he was happy to tag along. But a family outing to screen Sandler’s new family comedy proved to be more than even we could stomach.

This time around, Sandler does double duty, playing twins Jack and Jill Sadelstein. Jack, an advertising executive in California, is struggling to keep his business afloat—but if he doesn’t get Al Pacino to agree to star in a Dunkin’ Donuts commercial, he’ll lose one of his biggest clients. Meanwhile, as if that weren’t already bad enough, Jack’s obnoxious twin sister, Jill, flies out from the Bronx for her annual Thanksgiving visit and decides to stick around indefinitely.

  
 
With the clock ticking on the Dunkin’ Donuts account, Jack has to find a way to get to Pacino—and his connection ends up coming from an unlikely source: his sister. After just a brief meeting, Pacino is absolutely smitten with Jill and her Bronx charms, but Jill isn’t interested—so Jack sets out to make sure that everyone (but especially Jack himself) ends up happy.

Though it seems to promise a silly story about the undeniable bond between siblings, Jack and Jill is mostly just about product placement and fart jokes—with little or no detectable story. It seems to assume that audiences need nothing more than Adam Sandler in a wig and a dress to keep them entertained—so that’s all it offers. Sure, it has its amusing moments (though, admittedly, just a few), but the novelty of Sandler in drag soon wears off, and you’ll be left with the horrifying realization that Sandler as a woman actually makes Sandler as a guy look sweet and lovable and completely down-to-earth.

As Jill, Sandler is perhaps his loudest, his clumsiest, and his most obnoxious yet. The character is passive-aggressive and clingy and just plain annoying—annoying enough, in fact, that you’ll have a hard time blaming Jack for his occasional mean-spirited outbursts. Still, she fits pretty well with Jack’s bizarre family—including adopted son Gary (played by poor little Rohan Chand), who has a penchant for taping things to himself (like leaves…or a salt shaker…or a live lobster).

Meanwhile, Pacino is an equally bizarre—but totally welcome—addition to Sandler’s usual cast of misfits. How Sandler managed to talk him into the role is anybody’s guess, but his performance as a crazed, love struck version of himself is one of the film’s few highlights.

Of course, if you find bodily functions and guys wearing dresses absolutely hilarious, you should be mildly entertained by Jack and Jill. But even Sandler’s long-time fans would be better off pulling out their well-worn copy of Happy Gilmore—or even Just Go with It—instead.


Blu-ray Review:
In case you haven’t heard, Jack and Jill helped actor/producer Adam Sandler receive a record-breaking number of Razzie nominations. If that fact alone doesn’t frighten you—and you somehow make it to the special features menu on the film’s Blu-ray release—you’ll find plenty of Razzie-worthy extras.

The 13 deleted scenes have more poop jokes and Sandler-in-drag than any one person should be forced to endure. But if you still haven’t seen enough men in drag, you can also watch Boys Will Be Girls, a short feature about the male actors’ transformation into female characters. Other extras include a pretty standard gag reel and a pretty obvious promo for Royal Caribbean cruises.

Still, there are a couple of amusing extras on the disc, too. Regis makes an appearance in Stomach Ache, a look behind the scenes of his time on the set. And, for more on the film’s numerous cameos, check out Look Who Stopped By, which features just some of the stars who gave a few minutes of their time to appear in the movie. The copious cameos are often a highlight of Sandler’s films—and both of these features are highlights of an otherwise groan-inducing release.

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