March 26, 2023
Ithaca, NY | 42°F


Overdone plot hard to ‘go with’

Bringing in more than $30 million at the box office after one week, “Just Go With It” attracted many viewers, but that doesn’t mean the film deserved the No. 1 spot. The only reason it filled theaters was for fans of both Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler to see how well this unlikely duo would perform.

Danny (Sandler), a famous plastic surgeon, dupes women into sleeping with him by pretending he’s married. Danny’s schemes seem like his only game plan to score with women until he meets hot schoolteacher Palmer (Brooklyn Decker). She is initially charmed by Danny’s wit but is shocked when she finds a wedding ring hidden in his pocket — his usual pickup ploy. He enlists the help of his loyal secretary, Katherine (Aniston), who steps in and pretends to be his wife and claims they are amid a divorce — dragging along her two children every step of the way.

Sandler’s character lacks development and so does his acting. Compared to his all-around funny performances in “Big Daddy” and “Happy Gilmore,” his role as Danny does not do his famed career justice. The one romantic comedy he succeeded in was “50 First Dates,” but that was an exception considering his big personality does not fare well sharing the screen with a love interest. Sandler thrives in films where his quirky, comedic character drives the plot.

Alan Loeb’s script creates some pot holes in the film’s plot, which limits the potential of two typically strong leads. It contains underdeveloped plot points like the progression of Danny and Palmer’s relationship, such as when the film rushes to scenes of the fake family’s tropical getaway in Hawaii where Danny plans to win her heart.

Aniston’s raw and genuine comedy is reminiscent of her days on “Friends.” While both she and Sandler are comically compatible, they completely fail at building a believable romance. Rich additions to the film were cameos by Nicole Kidman, Dave Matthews and Heidi Montag as minor characters. Director Dennis Dugan’s choice of making Sandler a plastic surgeon may have only been used to bring the infamous and physically reformed Heidi Montag to the big screen.

With a script that delivers nothing quotable or particularly memorable, “Just Go With It” leaves audiences with nothing more than a few laughs along the way.

“Just Go With It” was written by Alan Loeb and Timothy Dowling and directed by Dennis Dugan.

2 out of 4 stars