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Overall Rating

Awesome: 17.99%
Worth A Look39.15%
Average: 15.34%
Pretty Bad: 8.47%
Total Crap: 19.05%

8 reviews, 141 user ratings

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Waterboy, The
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by Rob Gonsalves

"Scrappy fun if you're in the right mood."
4 stars

Now that Jim Carrey is testing deeper waters, Hollywood's mantle of the Golden Idiot has been passed to Adam Sandler, who has quietly and modestly built one of the major careers of recent years.

It's easy to see why: Sandler plays regular guys -- not stupid, but maybe a little slow; ambitious, but not heartless -- who go up against the big guys and win on their own terms. Not terribly original, but nothing much wrong with it, either. Sandler is also genuinely funny; he sits down with some buddies to work on his scripts, and leaves in all the goofy, silly stuff ("What if we did this? .... Nah, man, we can't do that") most writers would leave out.

The result has been some uneven but often wildly funny comedies. Happy Gilmore, from 1996, and The Wedding Singer, from earlier this year, both pack considerable charm and more than a few classic bits (like the Bob Barker scene in Happy Gilmore). Sandler's new one, The Waterboy, reunites the Wedding Singer team of Sandler buddies (director Frank Coraci, co-writer Tim Herlihy) and has already been described as a fusion of the rude-boy sports-fan Sandler of Happy Gilmore and the kinder, gentler Sandler of The Wedding Singer. Possibly, but his character this time, Bobby Boucher, is funnier than Happy or Robbie Hart.

The minute Sandler opens his mouth in The Waterboy, you're either irritated (as Roger Ebert was) or completely with him. Sandler speaks in a soft, zonked-out stutter with a dash of Louisiana accent. It's not the stutter so much as the doofus voice that struck me funny, spruced up by the unexpected appearance of words like "profusely" or "discourteous." Sandler's Bobby Boucher is a mild-mannered man-child, 31 years old and still under the thumb of his beloved mama (Kathy Bates). Booted from the college football team where he serves as a "water distribution engineer," Bobby finds work providing water to an underdog team coached by Henry Winkler, who sees a hidden talent in Bobby. Sufficiently riled up, Bobby can deliver bone-crushing tackles.

The Waterboy and Happy Gilmore will make good companion videos. Happy stormed up to the tee and whacked the ball as if going for a slap shot; Bobby goes into football with a similarly bullheaded, aggressive approach. These movies are about how a sad sack turns a flaw into a personal style, and that's why the repeated scenes of Happy or Bobby doing their thing don't become tiresome: We see how these sports rebels keep doing the same thing over and over until the fans start getting into it and loving it. We begin to see their shtick as a rude kind of integrity.

Fairuza Balk is around, too, as a hell-raiser with a bad rep; she's drawn to Bobby for the same reason all women are attracted to Sandler in his movies -- he loses his aggressiveness around women, and turns rather shy and sweet. Sandler and the usually rough-edged Balk have a gentle rapport. Everything leads to the big game, though the momentum is derailed by a long hospital sequence and a revelation that invalidates Bobby's fixation on water. I could've lived without the last scene, and the cameo of one of Sandler's fellow Saturday Night Live alumni wears out its welcome after the fifth or sixth insert of him.

Still, like most Sandler films, 'The Waterboy' is scrappy and funny and achieves its modest aim, which is to make us laugh like grade-schoolers. The doofus boy triumphs again.

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originally posted: 01/11/07 07:27:01
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User Comments

10/07/13 David Great movie! One of Sandler's better films. 5 stars
8/26/13 DB Worst Adam Sandler movie. Watch "Happy Gilmore" instead. 1 stars
9/25/10 art FAIRUZA BALK is the only PRETTY SIGHT in this MESS! 2 stars
1/28/10 Dane Youssef The most generic piece of star-vehicle crap ever. And this is coming from a Sandler fan 1 stars
2/08/09 [ming] jeesus - worst of all the total crap sandler movies 1 stars
11/22/08 Shaun Wallner Laughed my ass off! 4 stars
9/14/08 Samantha Pruitt pretty funny if you like Adam Sandler, a classic really 4 stars
7/27/08 The Dork Knight What the hell is Fairuza Balk doing here? 4 stars
2/04/08 Pamela White Adam plays himself a mentally challanged hero 4 stars
11/22/07 Matt Wet. 30 minutes of Sandler talking like an idiot and I changed channels. 1 stars
10/15/07 fools♫gold better than "Click," come to think of it. 3 stars
3/16/07 johnnyfog I liked Fairuza Balk, but this movie is still stupid as fuck 2 stars
2/16/07 Vip Ebriega Don't mess with HIS water!! 3 stars
2/10/07 Frank Rountree Funny, funny and funnier, great characters! 5 stars
1/11/07 Jake Hey, this was pretty damn funny... 4 stars
9/04/06 michelebspy Adam does his usual screaming comedy but the rest of the movie is kind of lame 3 stars
7/08/06 NS I was a little bit let down. 3 stars
6/08/06 Ashley Hinz That was Fairuza Balk? 4 stars
5/02/06 Anthony Feor Not Sandlars greatest moment, but still funny 3 stars
3/26/06 chris f another average comedy 3 stars
7/19/05 Brandy Harrington I watched this movie stoned, and I stil didn't laugh. 1 stars
5/25/05 The shizz funny 4 stars
5/17/05 E-FUNK I curse the day this heap of baboon shit was conceived. Someone kill Adam Sandler. 1 stars
4/27/05 lio sandler sucks, his films suck, he plays one of 4 characters in every one, all tired 1 stars
2/21/05 Dan Fucking Funny. 5 stars
2/02/05 CelticDawn Not the best movie, but Sandler is still funny 3 stars
10/26/03 Samuel Good, if you only watch it once or twice... 4 stars
7/26/03 3man "Foosball! Jus a bunch of overgrown animals manhandling each other!" 4 stars
3/19/03 Jack Sommersby Shouldn't entertain, yet it admittedly does. 3 stars
1/14/03 rotten s. milk Oh, c'mon, be fair, you sons of bitches! 5 stars
12/30/02 Femme_Fataleaa anything white, however stupid makes money. Waterboy is a perfect example of that! 1 stars
11/10/02 Jay Oh, c'mon be fair, you assholes who don't like it! 5 stars
11/09/02 Michael Bolton Terrible, how does this crap make money? 1 stars
10/14/02 Chancey Sugarpants Why must Sandler always play a 'tard? He can be funny, but far, FAR from it here. 1 stars
9/28/02 snowconehead FOOSBALL!!! you bin playin da foosball behin' my back!! 5 stars
6/08/02 Film Guy Watered down. Adam Sandler is not funny in this at all. 1 stars
5/28/02 hilary pretty bad 2 stars
2/27/02 Shrike Tripe 1 stars
1/24/02 Flick Chick what a waste. 1 stars
9/27/01 Butterbean This is where you should listen to the critics and not the public 1 stars
8/09/01 E-Funk Fucking annoying....FUCK! (pure frustration) 1 stars
8/07/01 Mr. Hat "The Waterboy" is one of the funniest movies ever made. 4 stars
7/29/01 Dom Corleone crap - even by sandler's standards 1 stars
6/09/01 G-MAN My mama said," This movie is pretty damn funny." 4 stars
4/04/01 Andrew Carden Kathy Bates manages to deliver a few good lines, but otherwise total crap. 1 stars
3/29/01 Monday Morning Makers of this shite should be lectured for three days, then shot. 1 stars
2/16/01 Joseph Roseberg How idiotic can a movie be! The humor wears thin pretty fast here. 1 stars
12/01/00 Elvisfan Inaccurate; if Kathy had Adam for a son, she would have killed him already 1 stars
11/20/00 Matthew Bartley I guess I just don't find Adam Sandler as a retard funny 1 stars
9/27/00 mephetic I love that phucked-up noise Colonial Sanders makes when he gets nailed by the paperweight. 5 stars
9/20/00 Jed It is better than billy madison though slightly better. 3 stars
9/19/00 Terrie Smith Not a bad film; Sandler has done better but worth watching for Bates and Winkler. 3 stars
7/24/00 Bender Not as funny as billy Madison or Happy Gilmore, but still funny. 4 stars
6/03/00 Jed Suprisingly better than billy madison. 3 stars
5/15/00 Jorge M. very funny movie! 5 stars
4/07/00 Richard Wright This was alright for an hour but deary me,the last 30 mins stunk. Not Sandler's best work. 2 stars
3/10/00 David Rogers Henry Winkler is the Fonz! Can't compare to Happy Gilmore, but good. 4 stars
3/10/00 Kyle Broflovski You could do much worse. More bang for the buck, ya know? 4 stars
2/08/00 waterboy loved, i;ve seen it about 20 times. i have the soundtrack, also very good. top movie 5 stars
1/09/00 John Markham A waste of film, a waste of money and more importantly, a waste of my fucking time. 1 stars
10/30/99 Bozo To call this 'crap' insults the real 'crap'-this transcends 'crap' 1 stars
10/02/99 richie bollocks 1 stars
9/25/99 Jumpjak Best slapstick this side of the swamp! 5 stars
9/12/99 Jason Kinsey The best Sandler film was "Billy Madison" but this was okay 3 stars
8/16/99 Marshy Sandler thinks were all morons. If you love bad movies heres another one. 1 stars
8/10/99 anny it was excellent 5 stars
7/24/99 Hagbard Celine Adam Sandler is such an obnoxious dork. I'd like to kick the hell out of that smelly turd. 1 stars
7/04/99 J-Dogg This shit sux and it's not funny at all. How come everyone loves this crap? 1 stars
6/22/99 Angie very cute movie, Adam is such a doll 5 stars
6/17/99 matchbox20 Silly stuff funny mind candy 5 stars
5/21/99 Angelic I'll be his watergirl anytime:) 5 stars
5/11/99 Angie it was cute, not Adam's best, but definitely a good laugh 4 stars
5/02/99 Michael Grimm If you love stupid humor this is king 5 stars
4/24/99 gibb You laugh, youll cry. Btaes is always good. 5 stars
4/20/99 bb Hey, It's Adam 5 stars
4/11/99 Alonzo kathy bates is lucky she sold out to a movie that made over 100million, otherwise.......... 4 stars
4/11/99 Tristynn another bad Adam movie.. This one was pathetic. more sad then funny.almost sacked out..ZZZZ 2 stars
4/06/99 Caca really funny, awesome 5 stars
3/30/99 H33eather definete Adam Sandler quality <well that and 35 cents will get u a phone call> 3 stars
3/18/99 Scott Stipe funnyfunnyfunnyfunny 5 stars
3/15/99 Felicia cute movie!! Love adam sandler 4 stars
3/15/99 Erin Bince It wasn't one of his better movies. But it was still funny. Not Adam material!!! 4 stars
3/14/99 Dharma Adam Sandler is my lover!!!! I laughed my ass off at this movie!!! 5 stars
3/13/99 Ah Dooey Happy Gilmore meets Dumb and Dumber on laughing gas 4 stars
3/12/99 Orgazmo I like Adam but this movie just is plain shit. 2 stars
3/11/99 Whitney I feel asleep 2 stars
3/09/99 Go Swans Why do you people think he is so funny. Happy sucked. 3 stars
3/05/99 Rachael Black Boring, Not Funny, Walk out half way through the movie material 1 stars
3/05/99 Angelic A movie with a little Billy Madison here and Happy Gilmore there..* * * * out of * * * * * 5 stars
2/22/99 Deadmonkey His worst movie. 3 stars
2/19/99 nun uf u r businness the movie rocks if yah like Adam Sandler then you should deffinatly see this movie!!!!!! 5 stars
2/18/99 Piz Big, hearty laughs surrounded by lame characters and plot. Its a Sandler movie! 4 stars
2/06/99 Don Wilson This movie was cool. Not Adam's best work though. 4 stars
2/05/99 David Littlefield Four thumbs up!! Fuckin riot!! I laughed so hard I pissed my pants, MORE than once!!!! 5 stars
1/31/99 Dexter A film in desperate need of a desiccant 1 stars
1/28/99 S.Smith Adam Sandler seems to have an extra chromosome. 1 stars
1/24/99 Slugmuffin Not Happy, but a classic Sandler pic, nonetheless! 4 stars
1/19/99 Mark Hannig I loved this movie, just like I love all of Adam Sandler's movies, he's fucking hilarious. 5 stars
1/19/99 MR HOLLYWOOD!! Its like Forrest Gump on cocaine!!,Cheerleaders cracked me up!! 3 stars
1/17/99 tyler everett it wasn't nearly as funny as i had expected. sandler's other ones were better 3 stars
1/17/99 Redial Adam Sandler was, is, and always will be, the funniest man on earth. But Happy's better. 5 stars
1/16/99 Melissa I love Adam. Can't get enough of him. 5 stars
1/16/99 Ashley it sucked so bad 1 stars
1/12/99 Miss Scarlett Its no Billy Madison, but it gets the Goat's Seal of Approval 5 stars
1/12/99 TNT You can do it! 5 stars
1/11/99 Jaime funny little charming "mama's boy" movie, Fairuza was great as his corrupting girlfriend. 4 stars
12/31/98 JDC Love Sandler but this film is about as funny as a USA Up All Night Movie. 2 stars
12/29/98 thEnd Hasn't this been tried and through? Sandler plays the underdog who wins big... plot, what? 3 stars
12/29/98 Schizofrenic Goddam amazing, beats Night at the Roxbury. Excellent. 4 stars
12/23/98 chuck-d Most people hit it on the head: Not High Film, but fucking entertaining 4 stars
12/22/98 PirateGirl I laughed, if only at Adam Sandler's earnestness. They didn't work hard on this film though 2 stars
12/15/98 kozmic Sandler isn't even funny to me but this character had me laughing all the way through. 4 stars
12/15/98 Abe Froman If you've always wanted to see Colonel Sanders get his ass kicked this is your chance. 5 stars
12/12/98 Dave Parrish Not without it's moments, but it's no "Gus"! 3 stars
12/10/98 daryl kip weber pretty fuckin' cool bitch 5 stars
12/09/98 Pat Flanagan Not as good as Happy Gilmore or Wedding Singer, but still a funny movie. 4 stars
12/08/98 Billy Bob Thorton KICK ASS MOVIE! 5 stars
12/06/98 Mr Showbiz Your typical low-brow yuckfest with plenty of telegraphed humor. 2 stars
12/04/98 Matthew J. Soucy Beneath contempt: a wafer-thin plot structure 1 stars
12/02/98 CaptNish *sob* Sure wish I could see Fairuza Balk's tits... 5 stars
12/02/98 Hugh Jass Everyone needs a little more laughter... Bring it on! 4 stars
12/01/98 Kirgo adequate, silly Adam Sandler film 3 stars
11/27/98 EvilGas Very Funny, Typical Adam Sandler 4 stars
11/26/98 Andrea Only Fairuza Balk makes this worth seeing. 3 stars
11/25/98 Bridgette WRETCHED. not funny at all. 1 stars
11/25/98 Jimmy White all the funny parts were shown on the commericals. 3 stars
11/25/98 Bad Kosh Fun movie for silly and hyperactive people. 4 stars
11/23/98 Freyja Total guy flick. Stupid, lowbrow, and not funny at all. 1 stars
11/17/98 Gamma Bates plays a good cajun. Wonder if Winkler had a body double? Sandler = awesome! 4 stars
11/14/98 Lew Mammel The "visualization" scenes alone were worth it. 5 stars
11/13/98 Lord Of The Dunce A few high points, some loooong dead scenes and toilet humor. Happy Gilmore 2. 3 stars
11/13/98 Daddy Rich I thought it was very entertaining. A lot of laughs. 4 stars
11/10/98 Baba booey Sucks. 1 stars
11/10/98 Pariah Funny enough...worth seeing for the football hits alone. Rob Schneider cameo was hilarious. 4 stars
11/09/98 16 in. of swingin' meat and a bucket of balls Vintage Sandler. Happy Gilmore meets Rain Man. Funny as hell, but no Happy Gilmore. 4 stars
11/08/98 agsmith Adam Sandler = God of Low-Brow, Funny-Ass Movies 4 stars
11/08/98 Johny Excited Southerner character + Happy Gilmore plot - Has some laughs, not his best though 4 stars
10/29/98 zenball ah yeah. anyone who has a disparaging comment deserves a Bouchier powerbomb 5 stars
10/19/98 Aint-It-Cool It works on many levels, and should do very well in the box office. 4 stars
9/14/98 Chip Taylor Just shoot Adam Sandler so he doesn't make anymore crappy movies. Shoot the no-emotion dick 1 stars
8/30/98 {{{OZ}}} So far as Adam Sandler films go, this one is a goodun. Shades of Happy Gilmore. 4 stars
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  06-Nov-1998 (PG-13)


  20-Jan-1999 (PG)

Directed by
  Frank Coraci

Written by
  Tim Herlihy
  Adam Sandler

  Adam Sandler
  Fairuza Balk
  Kathy Bates
  Henry Winkler
  Jerry Reed
  Blake Clark
  Rob Schneider

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