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OPENS TODAY: JACK AND JILL
Directed by Dennis Dugan
Starring Adam Sandler, Katie Holmes and Al Pacino
Duration: 90 minutes
THIS latest comedy from Adam Sandler features a double dose of the brash funnyman (a good thing if you’re a fan), as he plays a pair of twins, Jack and Jill Sadelstein.
Jack is the twin with everything — a successful career in advertising, beautiful wife with children and a huge house in Los Angeles.
His only worry is his sister, a loud, irritating and boring spinster from Brooklyn, New York, who comes over every year for Thanksgiving.
From the beginning of the film, Jill’s neediness and passive-aggressiveness drives Jack up the wall, turning his normally peaceful life upside down.
Their arguments always end up with Jack apologising and trying to make amends, which lead to even more disastrous results, like when he tries to hook her up with potential suitors through an online dating site.
At the same time Jack has to get Hollywood actor Al Pacino, who stars as himself, to appear in his new commercial to save his company from losing a very important client.
Pacino intentionally makes fun of himself here, by playing someone on the verge of a nervous breakdown, who by some long shot, finds inspiration and falls in love with Jill after a chance meeting.
This upsets Jack’s plan to shorten Jill’s stay at his house, so that the family can later go on a proper holiday aboard a luxurious cruise ship.
He now tries to convince his sister to go with Pacino to seal the deal for his company that will, in turn, save his career, which results in even more comedic moments.
The only trouble is that some of the jokes don’t always pan out well and others are not really fresh at that. Take the farting jokes — there are a few here, which also includes a long drawn out diarrhoea gag.
It’s a bold move for Pacino to hilariously go off the rails in this film. Some of his scenes are cringe worthy but the veteran actor plays himself with a straight face while hamming it up.
Co-written and produced by Sandler, Jack and Jill doesn’t feature much in the female department — Jill is irritating, Jack’s onscreen wife, played by Katie Holmes, is a harmless wallflower and Jill’s old schoolmate is an obnoxious hag, also played by a man. Along the way there are a few cameos of other Hollywood stars, including an anxious-looking Johnny Depp.
Director Dennis Dugan, a frequent collaborator with Sandler, does a decent job of putting the film together, despite the script, although the ending suddenly takes on a feel-good turn where everything is quickly tied up awkwardly in order to create some warm fuzzy feelings for all.
Fans of Sandler will enjoy the slapstick comedy and well worn gags of this movie, tailored for the holiday season.