Picture this: it’s a summer morning back in the days of your youth, nothing much going on, nothing planned. One by one, your friends – they all live in the neighborhood, as they did back then — drop by, looking for something to do — and you find it and it involves physical activities that are mostly out of doors. You had days like that, right? And if anyone back then suggested that what you were doing would have made a successful Hollywood movie, you would have thought that person lost his mind. Except if that person was Adam Sandler – who keeps making this same movie over and over again – perhaps as an excuse to hire his friends. Who is Sandler’s fan base? And do they ever take their brains off auto-pilot?
What Sandler delivers here is kind of a dog’s breakfast of stale jokes, unfunny scenes, some gross-out moments, and lame attempts at storytelling — all tied up with lazy acting, sloppy editing, and direction (by Dennis Dugan) that mostly seems to involve turning on and off the camera. Along the way, we meet old bullies, new bullies, the neighborhood moose, and some K-Mart shoppers. Only its PG-13 rating keeps this from becoming cringe-worthy. For Adam Sandler, I’m thinking this movie may be a twentieth anniversary celebration of him playing the same character he’s played since the 1990’s. His movies don’t cost much to make because there is no real talent involved. And what he always ends up with is a film that’s dumb, embarrassing, amateurish — and a lot funnier to him than it is to us.