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Overall Rating

Awesome: 18.31%
Worth A Look: 16.9%
Average: 12.68%
Pretty Bad: 5.63%
Total Crap46.48%

5 reviews, 41 user ratings

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I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry
[] Buy posters from this movie
by Erik Childress

"You Know How I Know This Film Is Gay? It Sucks Balls!"
1 stars

As a precursor to revealing my feelings about the latest Adam Sandler comedy, I would like to unveil a mild laundry lists of things that do not bother me as much as others. I am not bothered by straight guys doing high-decible impressions of homosexuals nor making any reference to activities participated in by the gay community at one time or another. I do not necessarily cringe the instant a non-Asian goes to the Mickey Rooney well, mixing up consonants through their oversized false teeth. Fat people, eat a little less and I’ll laugh less at the jokes. I present this list to you as a preamble so the body isn’t misinterpreted that I was somehow offended at a film featuring a stereotype overload. What does offend me as bad comedy; particularly the awful kind that tosses high concept under the lowest bar while cloaked in a hot button social issue that preaches acceptance but just ruins the chance for the rest of us to make better jokes. All joking aside though, the one thing the film succeeds at, Chuck & Larry is such an abysmal stab at comedy on every conceivable level that I wish there was a hate group we could join to protest it.

Chuck Levine (Adam Sandler) and Larry Valentine (Kevin James) are NY firefighters and best friends. Chuck’s living the bachelor’s life while Larry is the widower with two kids to feed. So deeped in grief is Larry that he neglects to renew his pension plan with an alternate beneficiary. After another death-defying incident on the job, Larry grows desperate and has one of those instant epiphanies only people in movies get when they look at a newspaper for three seconds. Domestic partnership. Cashing in on Chuck’s debt for saving his life, Larry convinces his friend to sign the papers at city hall. Problem solved. Only it’s not.

No one gets money without the suits coming by to check-up on the validity of their claim. A restless investigator named Fitzer (Steve Buscemi) makes unannounced appearances to search through their non-“gay” garbage and play with Larry’s kids. To keep themselves from going to jail, they hire Alex McDonough (Jessica Biel) a lawyer who could specialize in lifestyle conversion. She takes a girlfriend-type liking in Chuck and they begin hanging out, spending more time making charm bracelets than discussing the case. When Chuck & Larry are finally “outed”, their Captain (Dan Aykroyd) vows not to stand for their situation if it’s a scam and their fellow firemen begin keeping their distance. Awwww, poor fake gay guys.

I could continue on just listing the archaic gay jokes on display or the various terms used to describe said lifestyle. For your ten bucks you get the classics: “fruit”, “faggot”, “butt pirate”, “infection” and “Phil Collins”. But you can file that under the heading of lazy writing. To understand why Chuck & Larry belongs in a new, renovated circle of hell you need only begin with the characters themselves. We’ll provide Larry with a pass for just being a grieving dad looking to care for his children. That’s more than we can say about Chuck, so indulge me if you will in a bit of character examination, or more appropriately, assassination.

In the very first scene of the film, Chuck is revealed to be a notorious ladies’ man whom his buddies are deeply envious of. You think there would be one scene where one of his colleagues either questions his change of heart or outright calls him out on his bullshit. How ‘bout someone believing it’s a ploy to pick up more chicks and trying it out himself? Again, just the lack of ingenuity on display. But how good a friend is Chuck? This is a guy who comes into your home and makes fun of your effeminate son for enjoying musicals, tap dancing and expressions like “wowweeeee!” He even suggests throwing Larry’s kid in the garbage to gay-it-up. Any respectable father would punch this bastard in the eye, so there goes Larry’s father-of-the-year pass. Chuck is also a friend who disrespects your marital bed (Larry has kept his wife’s side empty for a year), who when failing to find an outlet to masturbate under the covers, diddles the plus-sized Russian maid without you waking up and even jokes that his dead wife is talking to him beyond the grave with the voice of a bad Adam Sandler impersonator. One of our heroes, ladies and gentlemen.

Oh I know he’s just the incorrigible, insensitive buddy to Larry’s straight man so let’s look to the film’s voice of reason – the woman. Anyone who sees Chuck & Larry and can tell me precisely what Biel’s Alex does for their case other than provide the audience with necessary exposition to the consequences and I’ll show you more pics of her in her underwear. During the inevitable last resort of the lazy screenwriter – the fourth Sandler film (and second this year) to end in a courtroom battle – Biel’s lawyer offers precisely one well-founded objection only to cave in to the gallery’s demand for man-on-man action and advise her clients to “just go for it” in the most ridiculous request of jurisprudence since Christopher Darden wanted to test a finger mitten. This goes further to implicating the film as even more misogynistic than homophobic since every woman in the film is either a “smokin’ hot-ass lawyer” with the lawyer part debatable, a “Dr. Honey” who succumbs to group sex after first being offended by Chuck’s advances, twins willing to use their mouths for something other than Doublemint, an all-Asian Hooters entourage and Nick Swardson.

Not that anyone but big moviefans are paying attention, but do NOT be fooled at the screenwriting credits listing Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor as contributors. Even as script polishers there is not a single trace of the wit or social commentary that has been their staple in Citizen Ruth, Election and Sideways. Third credit goes to Barry Fanaro, who may be credited as a writer on Kingpin (the other of which, Mort Nathan, went on to write that other straight/gay masterpiece, Boat Trip) but his work as a sitcom writer (The Golden Girls) and on Men In Black II goes further to explain this catastrophe. It’s almost pointless to blame any of the writers since all the supposed humor is of the distinctive Sandler style – loud shout-outs, smacks to the face, a role of ethnic descent for Rob Schneider. People are STILL laughing at this stuff? Based on the depressing display at the screening I attended, it was easy down the stretch to chart additional tens of millions to the already guaranteed nine figures. $300 million for this and Wild Hogs is just too gay to think about.

We can bet that Dennis Dugan, Adam Sandler and his pot buddies don’t read all the negative reviews that align their animal cages. But one of them had to have seen Seinfeld’s classic “Outing” episode, right? Or even the “you know how I know you’re gay” banter from The 40 Year-Old Virgin? Those are lessons in comedy right there and a stepping stone to working in anything that would touch a nerve through 115-minutes. If you’re going to go the full nine and repeatedly use the taboo “faggot” to make a point, then playing it safe the rest of the way is the worst thing you can possibly commit to. Chuck doesn’t “learn” anything from a protesting minister using the word in a crowd. He could have called him “Count Chukula” and netted the same punch. Despite never having a conversation about his son’s non-masculinity (aside from his best bud constantly ragging on him) I wonder if Larry would be so accepting if the kid was a crappy dancer. And what is with the unprovoked resolution in the courtroom? Faster than you can say “a thorny bird, a thorny-thorny” the already ludicrous finale wanes into speechifying designed to first implicate, then celebrate Chuck & Larry’s decision with an air of solidarity that would make Spartacus puke oysters and clams? This was a pretty disgusting experience from beginning-to-end; a point of pride for no one involved. Nick Swardson will probably counter my review by contending I didn’t like it cause I enjoy Phil Collins and found Larry’s son (named Eric) a little too close to home. I’ll trump his David Spade by reminding him my name is spelled with a “K” and that I could stare at Jessica Biel in her underwear for 115 days straight and it still wouldn’t be a bigger waste of time or intelligence as I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry.

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originally posted: 07/20/07 14:00:00
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User Comments

7/20/15 Bernie Great review - you said it perfectly! 1 stars
5/30/15 Nana you are a stupid reviewer. can't an attorney (biel) feel free anymore 5 stars
6/01/09 Chuck Im sick of dan akroid 1 stars
5/13/09 art the only good thing about this mess,was JESSICA BIEL"S FACE AND BODY! 1 stars
4/29/09 Fadian Terrible film but Kevin James is gorgeous. 5 stars
3/08/09 SandySue Like Adam Sandler, but this was horrible! Stupid,stupid,stupid! 1 stars
1/21/09 mr.mike Ending a comedy with a long , boring city council hearing is never a good idea. 3 stars
10/21/08 Shaun Wallner Great Film! 5 stars
9/13/08 lisa absolutely cracked me up!!!!! 5 stars
8/23/08 Brent This is really really close to Battlefield Earth for the worst movie ever made. Awful. 1 stars
6/06/08 TreeTiger Mark my words - this movie will make you cringe so many times..! 1 stars
4/11/08 Marcus It's pretty funny! 4 stars
3/24/08 ladavies Bad idea all the way around 1 stars
2/13/08 elisa perkins It was just bad. Bad. 1 stars
1/21/08 Jayson The movie's just eewwy!! 2 stars
12/01/07 Francisova Sisi Hardly atones for half of stereotypes invoked;bestpart's view ofJessica Biel's caca-kissers 2 stars
11/22/07 fools♫gold funniest Sandler of ... well, for a while 4 stars
10/24/07 William Goss Typically moronic homophobia antics, capped w/ a sermon on political correctness, natch. 2 stars
9/28/07 Rob Thompson Hear hear, about as painful as a bullet to the head. 1 stars
8/18/07 Dark Enchantress funny ass movie! 5 stars
8/16/07 Monika this movie was hilarious and i coulndt stop lauging 5 stars
8/15/07 Ashley Perfect team 4 the perfect movie!!! I wouldnt want anything changed cept 4 Sandler 2b w/ me 5 stars
8/11/07 kelsey amazing movie. hilarious! those of you who can't appreciate humor, get over yourselves. 5 stars
8/01/07 Kirsten AMAZING ! HILARIOUS ! 5 stars
7/30/07 Jason J. ( ) Definitely a "Hollywood" product but great light on the topic and LOTS of laughs! 4 stars
7/29/07 Gypsy If I could give less than one star I woould! This is GAY BASHING! BIGOTRY IS NOT FUNNY!!! 1 stars
7/28/07 Zaw This movie sucked! Some funny parts but too much sandler 1 stars
7/28/07 Daave what is the collective IQ of the people posting here? Sometimes I am scared shitless. 1 stars
7/27/07 Hello Stranger this movie feels lame right through to the end. 1 stars
7/26/07 Dark Enchantress very funny! 5 stars
7/26/07 Jackie I love Adam Sandler, huge fan! He looked soooo good in this movie!!! 5 stars
7/26/07 Jared Miller This "critic" is trying too hard and is out of touch with the real person. Good movie. 4 stars
7/25/07 Diane Eral I love this movie...we all need humor in our life! 4 stars
7/25/07 Bekah. This movie made me cry with laughter. 5 stars
7/24/07 Meschelle Funny but a little over done 3 stars
7/24/07 Lewis Making derogatory jokes 3/4 of the movie and then saying that is bad doesn't make up for it 1 stars
7/24/07 simon THIS MOVIE WASS FUNNYY!!!!! 5 stars
7/23/07 caiphn I think tards should keep their opinions to themselves. 2 stars
7/22/07 Random the turn by Dave Matthews & others earn 3 stars 3 stars
7/21/07 Anna I thought it was funny and had a nice message. Funny with great music too! 4 stars
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  DVD: 06-Nov-2007



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