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Overall Rating

Awesome: 7.22%
Worth A Look: 8.25%
Average: 14.43%
Pretty Bad43.3%
Total Crap: 26.8%

9 reviews, 43 user ratings

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by Erik Childress

"Any Way To Blame Nick Swardson For This One, Too?"
2 stars

The changing-your-life-for-the-better conceit goes back well before the days that Frank Capra brought us George Bailey and Bedford Falls. Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol appeared sometime in the 1840s and I’m sure a few churchgoers could find you a few tales from the Old Testament to prove the point. Wow, is that a loaded opening of resumes to introduce an Adam Sandler comedy and it would have been nice to actually invite favorable comparisons; a sign that Sandler had the necessary strength to channel what he may have learned from Paul Thomas Anderson and James L. Brooks. But this is a Happy Madison production, through and through and instead of high concept turning into comedy gold with a touch of sentiment, we get a childish load of staleness that farts in the face of its Capraesque pursuit.

Sandler’s Michael Newman is the latest in the long line of husbands working too much to provide for his family and ignoring their needs in the process. He doesn’t make it to his son’s swim meet, complete their treehouse and wife Donna (Kate Beckinsale) is getting annoyed. After a tirade that, in essence, is totally justifiable Michael uses it as an excuse to go hunting for a universal remote control at the only store open past 9 pm – Bed, Bath & Beyond. Finding that “Beyond” section we’ve been seeking out forever, Michael meets nutty inventor Morty, inevitably played by Christopher Walken.

Morty gives him the most special of all remotes, one that can literally control his universe. Point at an object and you can turn the volume down, pause it or fast forward to your heart’s content. Quite an advantage for Michael who now has the power to skip fights, skip family dinners and inexplicably speed through foreplay with his unbelievably hot wife. (What the hell is wrong with a little massaging, especially when Kate Beckinsale is ASKING FOR IT?) The remote does come with one further advanced feature though – the ability to self-program itself to its owner’s preferences. When Michael does it once, a mere mention and it goes on auto-pilot.

It doesn’t take much ingenuity to turn this into a pleasantly charming comedy and shouldn’t take much effort to milk this for maximum comedy effect. But this is Sandler’s entourage behind-the-scenes and have taken the script by Steve Koren & Mark O’Keefe (the scribes behind Bruce Almighty) and fine-tuned it to their specific comedy tastes. This means a mélange of scatological humor from dog pooping to dog humping to the aforementioned gas disposal on the desk of Michael’s boss (an unfunny performance by David Hasselhoff that’s liable to destroy Dirk Nowitzki’s free throw percentage forever.) There’s also a constant harassment of an obnoxious child neighbor (just how badly did the O’Doyle’s pick on Sandler as a kid?) that results in not one ounce of ire by the kid’s parents. Hasn’t Sandler realized that has fans (or some of them anyway) have managed to grow up and are enjoying somewhat more sophisticated comedies like Anchorman or The 40 Year-Old Virgin? Yes, they came with their fair share of silliness but they didn’t cement their feet in the lowest common denominator of the humor scale – particularly with all the possibilities inherent in the concept.

Just like Bruce Almighty, Koren & O’Keefe’s script does its best to solve the queries behind such a power – such as what happens to Michael in real-time while he’s skipping chapters. But where is the real sense of exploration into what this device can truly accomplish? The menu feature allows Michael to relive moments from his past, so why not attach himself to more moments he’d like to play over and over (his courting of Beckinsale is constantly interrupted by the Sandler’s look) or the regrets that he can seek to change? Why doesn’t he pause more moments to stop time and get what he needs to get done so he can dote on his family or massage his wife properly? And has anyone with this film ever listened to a commentary track before? Unless its Rob Reiner or Michael Mann, the director inevitably is not just going to be commenting on precisely what’s happening or acting as a narrator for the viewer, no matter how funny a choice like James Earl Jones may be. Wouldn’t it have been more fascinating to hear what God might have had to say about this Michael creation or even hear Michael himself as an inner monologue talking about moments of his life with said regret or joy?

That’s way too much to expect from a Happy Madison production though as Michael uses his newfound power like an idiot manchild 24/7 that results in pathetically staged scenes like finding the right skin tone or a sexual harassment seminar that would have been a better place for the James Earl Jones commentary instead of just hitting the language button. So when the film goes for the weepy histrionics in the final third when Michael comes to terms with everything he’s missed out on, it registers as thoroughly false and is not helped by their willingness to continue throwing it out-of-place jokes involving skin flaps and banana hammocks.

You can always identify a Sandler picture from the soundtrack just as you can Cameron Crowe or Quentin Tarantino. (Two more names I can’t believe I’m invoking.) Just imagine the pot-induced haze emanating from their 1970s power vehicles alongside the hot power bands of the time and you can understand what happens when you throw millions at them to produce comedy. Sandler went the Capra route once before with Mr. Deeds, a film I’ve taken my share of beatings over for actually recommending at the time. But at least that film maintained a consistent tone and balance between the sweet and the absurd and I laughed (however unreasonably) enough to say that I enjoyed it. (Forgive me.) But I’ll continue to stand by the Billy Madisons and Happy Gilmores and Wedding Singers because of their consistency and they were little more than big, stupid comedies that delivered. Click delivers a few chuckles (mostly from Walken) but I suspect even the most loyal of Sandler followers will be dispirited with the sharp, rutted turn into the forced, weepy melodrama. Any audience member who comes up with just one original idea to use the remote for should be close to realizing that Click is just a test pattern of noise with no fair warning to its annoyances.

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originally posted: 06/23/06 14:16:04
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User Comments

9/13/17 morris campbell pretty good nothing more 3 stars
2/19/13 the truth oh, look! kate beckinsale in a GOOD movie- oh, wait. Nevermind 2 stars
8/23/10 Anonymus The minute I saw Sean Astin wearing a speedo, I knew this was going to be a desperate film. 2 stars
9/05/09 Stevie Not as bad as the reviews say 3 stars
7/14/09 aliceinwonderland To me it is not a comedy but a relationship movie 3 stars
1/14/09 Anonymous. i feel pathetic but i almost cried :] 4 stars
9/13/08 David I just watched the movie- for a hundred times. It always made me cry. 5 stars
8/11/08 Jon G a beautiful message 5 stars
3/29/08 Bill O Really Lamos muchous dorkus gagus 1 stars
8/15/07 Ashley Well I LOVE this movie & it was a great change for him and IT MADE ME CRY!! but great story 5 stars
7/07/07 maribel reyes i think that it was good b/c it gives a good message that family comes first . 4 stars
7/07/07 AnnieG Was I supposed to even care? Stopped watching about half way through. 2 stars
5/18/07 Smiler only worth watching for Kate Beckingsale. she is hot! 3 stars
5/14/07 fools♫gold If only there was more original music playing during the credits. 9/10 4 stars
2/18/07 kid kool What the fuck are you on about josh? "It was a good film," The movie was lame and so are yo 1 stars
1/06/07 Valerie Cameron meredith, do you mean "not too great", "not to grate"...or what? 2 stars
11/29/06 Stanley Thai One of the best films. Not your normal Adam Sandler movie. 4 stars
11/11/06 Zod Lame and predictable 2 stars
11/11/06 Tesch I love this movie but i didnt really get the ending very much 5 stars
11/11/06 Mariah I love this movie! 5 stars
11/11/06 Kristina Cooney If you just like simple family movies it will satisfy your appetite 4 stars
10/23/06 meredith Click was funny at times and then turned around and tried to be all deep, not to great 3 stars
10/17/06 Tiffany funny at times, wouldnt watch agian 2 stars
10/14/06 michael sounded like a good idea till I watch the movie 3 stars
10/13/06 Lucy Lymonhurst If she can't break better new ground than this, call her Kate BeckinSTALE! 1 stars
10/09/06 Caiphn First movie to be so bad that it made me angry. 1 stars
9/30/06 Regina Haniger Well,well -- I'd just as soon see Kate Beckinsale making more vampire flicks after all. 2 stars
9/18/06 Carmen Mistletoe Fart& dog-humpin joke haters, lighten up! That has nothing to do with why this is a failure 2 stars
9/17/06 Captain Craig Be honest now: haven't we all had quite enough of Adam Sandler? 1 stars
9/16/06 Sheila Evans I needed a much better reason for living to see "the Fonz" play a grandfather. 2 stars
9/16/06 Stephanie Throckmorton Tries to be comedy but is too morose; tries to be morality play but is too preposterous. 2 stars
8/17/06 Pn. The problem isn't Sandler, it's the Sandler handlers. 4 stars
7/25/06 Amy Obviously, the film wasn't trying to shoot for Capra. It was a great Sandler movie 4 stars
7/16/06 KingNeutron A bit heavy-handed, but Walken and Winkler were great. (And Beckinsale is hot!) 3 stars
7/12/06 AlanV Sentimental & obvious twist, some interesting ideas but infantile humour lets it down 2 stars
7/08/06 Anthony Feor goes from funny to hilarious with justa click 4 stars
7/05/06 Mr. Sandler Sucks I'm sick of sandler movies. a few good jokes and funny parts but movie sucked. 3 stars
7/03/06 MikeT no nonsense Meat & potatoes comedy Sandler style. big boobs r funny if handled correctly! 5 stars
7/02/06 greg It was a waste of my time to watch this hyped up film.!!!! 1 stars
7/01/06 Obi Wan Someone stop Sandler please!! 1 stars
6/29/06 josh it was a good film 5 stars
6/26/06 Jack I hated my date but my date loved it! 2 stars
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  23-Jun-2006 (PG-13)
  DVD: 10-Oct-2006



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