UK Release Date: 23rd May 2014
Runtime: 117 minutes
Director: Frank Coraci
Writer: Ivan Menchell, Clare Sera
Starring: Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore, Terry Crews, Joel McHale, Bella Thorne, Braxton Beckham
Synopsis: After a disastrous blind date, two mismatched single parents find themselves staying at the same safari resort in South Africa.
The continuing movie career of Adam Sandler is nothing short of mystifying. He consistently produces sub-par comedies in exotic destinations, seemingly funded entirely by shameless product placement. The fact that his latest effort, Blended, is terrible will not be a surprise to anyone at all.
Jim (Sandler) is struggling to bring up his daughters (Bella Thorne, Emma Fuhrmann) after the death of his wife. After a disastrous blind date with single mum Lauren (Drew Barrymore), he seizes an unexpected chance to take a safari holiday to South Africa. Unexpectedly, Lauren and her two boys (Braxton Beckham, Kyle Red Silverstein) happen to be there as well.
Blended is built entirely on an enormous plot contrivance and keeps the huge logical leaps coming as it plays out the generic “odd couple” storyline. There’s never any suspense as to where the narrative is going and the set pieces feel pretty standard and unamusing. It’s the same film we’ve seen a hundred times from Sandler, but with elephants.
| "My mom is friggin’ hot."
Thankfully, Blended isn’t offensive in the way that both Jack & Jill and That’s My Boy were. It is, however, offensively bland and completely devoid of laughs. There’s also a horrible moment in which Sandler’s character is expected to accept Barrymore’s transformation of his daughter into tarted-up jailbait.
From the moment the cast touches down in Africa, it becomes incredibly clear that the entire project is little more than an expensive holiday for the actors involved. Barrymore and Sandler, reuniting after The Wedding Singer and 50 First Dates, are completely devoid of chemistry and look like the movie is serving as an inconvenient distraction from their lovely African break.
The rest of the cast don’t seem to be much more invested. Every character is a one-dimensional caricature, from a stupid blonde with large breasts to the camp, dancing African entertainer at the resort, played with visible pain by Terry Crews.
| "He has that high, phlegmy voice like he drinks a lot of dairy.”
No one in Blended appears to be having fun, least of all the audience, as the story plays out in a mixture of schmaltz and stupidity. Unfortunately, it will still bring in enough money to get Sandler in front of the camera again. And again. And again.
Pop or Poop?
It’s not quite as bad as several of his recent films, but Blended is still another failure for the canon of Adam Sandler. Full of cliché and stereotyping, the film is a lazy effort that simply rehashes every romcom trope in history.
Sandler fans will get exactly what they expect, and he will once again walk out of it all with an enormous pile of money. Meanwhile, no one can afford to make a sequel to Dredd…
Do you agree with my review? Let me know in the comments section.