Movie Review: Just Go With It- Another Pointless Comedy That Lacks a Believable Narrative and Offers Very Few Laughs

After experiencing the new drawn out Adam Sandler comedy Just Go With It you would think the title was a consistent plea to the audience to leave behind their brain and simply go along with the mindless, unbelievable, and expected story that was to follow. That certainly turned out to be a drastically high expectation for movie audiences who expect a little coherence and actual jokes from their comedies. Unfortunately the non-acclaimed director Dennis Dugan of You Don’t Mess with the Zohan actually makes an even lazier attempt at comedy that just feels pointless, typical, and completely void of humor. Mostly the film feels like the equivalent of an exploitation film for Jennifer Aniston and bombshell Brooklyn Decker to walk around in bathing suits to be admired. What little humor there is can be attributed to the underused abilities of Nick Swardson as Just Go With It feels too long as an inevitably joyless experience.

Nothing could really be as bad as Adam Sandler’s last atrocious movie (the one that can’t really be called a comedy) entitled Grown Ups but Just Go With It comes dangerously close for those who might have an apoplexy due to poorly concocted plots and jokes (such as myself). The implausible plot, a remake from an Ingrid Bergman film called Cactus Flowers, follows Sandler as Danny, a plastic surgeon who uses a fake wedding ring and tall tales of a horrible non-existent wife to gain sympathy from attractive nit-witted women for one night stands. But when Danny gets called out on his lie from a woman he begins to truly care about his lie begins to take a life of its own. He convinces his trustworthy secretary Katherine (Jennifer Aniston) to pose as his soon to be ex-wife, but typical with all lies, and most movies of this nature, they keep getting bigger as Katherine’s actual kids get involved after a mishap phone call. Of course, Just Go With It becomes a talentless juggling act of lies, confusing identities, and realizations of true feelings that feels so cliché it almost borders on insulting (actually it is).

Just Go With It is a comedy of despicable errors that not only becomes less humorous as the time stretches on but is also completely void of redeemable character qualities. Danny is a liar, a narcissist, and abuses children when annoyed by their nagging, which doesn’t normally make someone of his nature a sympathetic character despite the film trying to make him one. It’s especially difficult to believe his sudden realization and change in the end, especially in regards to claiming he cares for the kids after so many scenes of Sandler badgering on the young ones physically (pushing them away after a fake hug or throwing one in the mud). Also Sandler is slowly becoming more deserving of being considered an equivalent to Woody Allen as the center love interest in his films where the women are always the same age despite the fact that he keeps getting older. We should all look forward to the day they make a romantic comedy with Helen Mirren and Meryl Streep as older women who hunt down young men, which would quite obviously be called Cougars. Maybe Judi Dench can get a piece of that action.

But the typical narrative wouldn’t be such an anchor if it wasn’t for the continuous use of poorly written jokes. Happy Madison Productions seems to thrive on gross out humor, uncomfortable circumstances, and outrageous dialogue. The structure just hasn’t been working in the past couple of years, and this goes especially for the strained and lazy Just Go With It. Both Sandler and Aniston struggle with the basic premise and uncreative jokes forcing the film to feel more like a chore than a fun experience. There is nothing witty about the dialogue exchanges nor anything quite memorable about the characters, despite some valid attempts with Dave Matthews as a closeted gay inventor, Nicole Kidman as Katherine’s competitive college roommate, and Nick Swardson as Danny’s inept cousin. Luckily there are a few moments with stand-up comedian Nick Swardson that garner a few laughs, such as giving a sheep as he calls it Shee-P-R (oh god, maybe he wasn’t that funny, that was tough to type).

As comedies go nowadays there is a complete lack of inventive narratives and a total dependence on uncomfortable circumstances or gross out humor. There are no more tongue in cheek remarks, insult gags, amusing anecdotes, or witticisms because in all honesty that type of writing just takes too damn long. Rotating simplistic story templates with a few exaggerated moments or outrageous circumstances (such as a popped breast implant) is easy when all you have to do is spend a few million on getting name actors to promote the film. Audiences flock to these poor excuses of cinematic comedy because they’re desperate for a laugh. While Just Go With It isn’t as bad as Sandler’s last film (Grown Ups) or Aniston’s inexplicably atrocious Bounty Hunter, it still is an experience that has very little laughs and will ultimately be completely forgettable.

Grade: C-

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One Response to “Movie Review: Just Go With It- Another Pointless Comedy That Lacks a Believable Narrative and Offers Very Few Laughs”
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