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Blended is bland with funny bits and almost a plot

Paul Peterson

Paul Peterson

I was watching a documentary about the Eagles this morning and the making of the Hell Freezes Over Tour and so I was already prepped for something historical.
If something as improbable as The Egos reuniting can come together, then I suppose I can lift my lifetime ban on saying positive things about an Adam Sandler film.
Don’t misunderstand me
Blended isn’t really a good film. It’s just bad for better reasons. That feels like progress.
This is the third pairing of Sandler and Barrymore. They caught lightning in a bottle with The Wedding Singer, a mediocre movie that women liked and made it a box office monster.
Then there was 50 First Dates which I quite liked.

Blended breaks a bit from recent Sandler formulaic filmmaking. There might have been a script and there’s almost a plot. On occasion we see hints of character development and there are a couple of running jokes that work.
In particular, the ever-present African musical troupe Tattoo who sing catchy summary of the story so far. It’s funny for no  reason other than dumb works sometimes.
Our story so far.
Sandler’s wife has died, a saintly woman who left him and his three girls with a weird comraderie and a huge, gaping hole in their life.
His oldest is a tomboy by his design; the middle daughter still includes her deceased mom in her day-to-day and the youngest is the precocious one. All serve as benchmarks for story arc travel.

Barrymore has two sons with a parent absent dad who just keeps letting them down. Of course, Drew and Adam have a bad blind date but then luckily end up at a resort in Africa where as luck would have it, his daughters need a mom and her sons a father figure.
I wonder…

So, it’s predictable and falls into my least favorite Hollywood cliche, the inevitability of love.  Take two people, put them together and by movie’s end ‘Hello Wedding Bells.’ So why doesn’t it suck?
Well there are a couple of funny parts.
Kevin Nealon is incredibly funny as half of a spring/winter couple. He speaks in cliched two-word summary statements and the couple is sublimely over the top.
There’s a class for new moms trying to avoid being killed by their step-children – which has one of the film’s funniest moments. I found myself chuckling a couple of times.
It was ok.
It hasn’t done typical Sandler numbers which suggest that there will be a Grown Ups 3 or some other comedic atrocity, but for now it’s safe to go inside.
Blended isn’t horrible. That’s pretty strong praise coming from  me.

As always, other opinions are welcome, but wrong. That’s it for this week. The cheque’s in the mail and I’m outta here. Paul

Filed Under: News from Everywhere ElsePaul Peterson

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