FILM REVIEW: Grown Ups 2
If you missed it, 2010's Grown Ups was essentially The Big Chill with extra pee jokes, as Larry (Adam Sandler) and friends reunited for the funeral of their beloved basketball coach. Now, we have Grown Ups 2, which is Sandler's version of the play Our Town crossed with Police Academy.
In Grown Ups 2, former Hollywood hot shot Larry and his wife (Salma Hayek) have settled down in a small town in Massachusetts, but really — it's just an excuse for Sandler and his small army of friends to goof off. Plot David Spade in a tire? Why not? Cast Shaq as an overgrown police officer? Sure, since that should balance out the Stone Cold Steve Austin cameo nicely. All that's left is to squeeze in a few 80s-music jokes for the sweatpants-wearing target demographic and liberally sprinkle the works with some "burpsnart" — the signature Burp-Sneeze-Fart (naturally!) associated with Kevin James' character.
Low-brow doesn't quite cover it, but to its credit, Grown Ups 2 does have a zany, almost Zucker-like energy. When Sandler and co. aren't delivering lame jokes about getting old, they're building towards a Revenge of the Nerds-style confrontation with a crew of amped-up frat boys, led by Twilight's Taylor Lautner (in a surprisingly amusing appearance).
While there might be a future in comedy for Lautner, Sandler at this point is only aiming to please himself. I will admit, however, that it's strangely fascinating to watch a star of his magnitude — with the power to recruit half of Hollywood — churn out the laziest comedy in recent memory. Whether you're laughing along with him depends on your tolerance for the bedrock of boob and poop jokes on which this film is built.
Rating: 2 stars out of 5. (One star's for Lautner, the other for a Hall & Oates gag)
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