14 March 2007

More Movie Reviews: "Click"

Adam Sandler. Christopher Walken. People are of mixed opinions on the former, but tend to enjoy the latter's work. I actually don't mind Adam Sandler, and think that he can be funny at times. And "Click" seemed to have an interesting premise to it, so with our new Columbia House membership we bought this movie for a nickel.

And... well, it wasn't bad at least. The battle of minds between Adam Sandler and the goofy next-door neighbor's kid who boasts about his parents is funny at times. David Hasselhoff turns a good performance as Sandler's smarmy boss. And Henry Winkler, long past "Fonz" days, plays Grampa. All decent performances.

And Christopher Walken turns in a decent performance as the facilitator to the real star of the show, the remote. Yet somehow he never really threatens to turn in an A+ performance, he stays safely in the C+ "I'm not going to upstage the stars"-level of acting.

Which brings us to Adam Sandler himself. His movies always tend to have a certain attitude and sameness about them, and I can certainly understand why people would find his movies unpleasant. There was more than a bit of South Park-type humor, with some children swearing up a storm... while some people do enjoy this type of humor, I'm not a fan.

But this brings me to the very nature of the movie. If I knew the facts I'm going to disclose below before watching the movie, I may not have bothered. So...

Fact #1: This movie skews away from "comedy" about forty-five minutes in.

Fact #2: This movie is one of those movies where years pass in seconds.

First, an explanation about Fact #2: I find movies that pass time like that extremely depressing. I don't know if it is because I start thinking, "What if this happens to me, I don't want to miss my life" or if there's another reason behind it... but I just don't like movies like this. The other best example I can name is a movie from the early 90s called "Sandlot", where the movie was about a bunch of boys for 95%, and the epilogue showed two of the main characters... about twenty-five years later. It's almost like reading a beginning and then an ending. I am very highly interested in the journey of life, and movies/books that skip stuff like that depress me even if it is supposed to be the point of the plot.

(Another uncomfortable movie for me was "Howl's Moving Castle", where the 16-year-old main character was changed into an old woman by means of a magic spell... but she does return to being young again. It's *still* uncomfortable to me though...)

If nothing else, you can treat my dislike of movies/stories like this like I treat people who don't like Adam Sandler movies... just to shrug, accept and move on. Though again, if someone had told me the two facts above, it would have made me avoid this movie, and after having seen it I would not have minded.

Anyway, for more spoilers, the remote in question is used to "fast-forward" Michael Newman (Adam Sandler) first one year in the future, to a promotion at work. Then the remote takes over and involuntarily fast-forwards Michael's life ten years in the future, to another promotion at work. Then six years in the future, to skip a long illness. And probably a couple more times that I completely missed (the credits allude to the younger daughter ending at 28, and my math doesn't add up). Towards the end, Adam Sandler's character had a heart attack somewhere around his early 50s and sees his kids only like once at ages 7/6, then once again at 17/16, and at the end at 29/28. And in the movie, he dies after a "heartwarming" family scene...

only to be revealed as a dream...

yet after the above reveal, Morty (Christopher Walken) has put the remote back in Michael's hands, with a note, in essence asking Michael if he learned his lesson. Yes, emphatically, Michael did, and he throws it out.

So be it. I just remember that this is the same Hollywood that grinds people underneath their heels and typically goes with 20-hour shooting schedules and the like. Not that the message is a bad one... far from it. I just think that the originator of the message should just... conform a bit more to it.

Anyway, if you think that Adam Sandler can pull off drama and you're not put off by the two facts outlined above, by all means check this movie out. But if you're uncomfortable about either fact, you might as well stick with the first forty-five minutes, and fast-forward to the end like Adam Sandler does.

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