Jack and Jill Directed by: Dennis Dugan Cast: Adam Sandler, Katie Holmes, Al Pacino Running Time: 1 hr 33 mins Rating: PG Release Date: November 11, 2011
PLOT: Jack Sadelstein (Sandler) finds his twin sister Jill (Sandler) annoying. So, when she keeps extending her stay over the holidays, he gets more upset. But then, Al Pacino (himself) is interested in Jill. She doesn't feel the same way, but Jack needs Al for the big Dunkin' Donuts commercial.
WHO'S IT FOR? Think for a second what you consider the worst Sandler movie. If you still liked that, then see this. And no, your answer for worst can't be Punch Drunk Love.
EXPECTATIONS: Ugh. I wasn't looking forward to this one. It seemed like a mock-trailer from Funny People or a weak SNL sketch. Perhaps it will have some of the charm of the great SNL Gap sketch? Actually, that's a pretty big hope.
"Burn this!" That's a line from the character Al Pacino, played by Al Pacino. It comes at the tail end of Jack and Jill and immediately had me thinking of the ending of Inglourious Basterds when Lt. Aldo Raine (Brad Pitt) says, "I think this just might be my masterpiece." You could feel Quentin Tarantino speaking directly through Pitt's character. For me, that Basterds moment had a double meaning. So, when Pacino says, "Burn this!" he might be talking about the Dunkin' Donuts commercial within the movie, but I feel he's also talking directly to Adam Sandler about the whole thing.
The film starts with real-life identical twins sharing experiences, just like married couples did at the beginning of When Harry Met Sally.... Here's the thing though, I know identical twins have to be the same sex. I don't think anyone told Sandler. Jack looks exactly like Sandler always looks. Jill looks like Sandler with a fake chest, a wig and a lot of makeup. In other words, they look identical. There is never a reference to Jill losing her penis early in life, or their parents making a difficult decision because she had all the parts. They are fraternal twins. On a side note, this proves Tim Meadow's co-worker character a complete imbecile because he actually asks Jack if his female twin is fraternal or identical.
Why do I care so much about this fraternal/identical thing? Because there is no comedy in the concept. We don't need a character that looks like Jack to find Jill funny looking. We already know what ordinary Sandler looks like. Plus, there is no groundbreaking special effects used when the two interact, so why?! The only reason is if this somehow brings the funny along with it, and there just aren't enough jokes to make this film work on any level.
Sure, it's interesting to see Pacino go for it. That's this film's saving grace, but just barely. Cameos from Regis Philbin, Dana Carvey, Drew Carey, Shaquille O'Neal, Jared (the Subway guy) and Dan Patrick don't help at all. Johnny Depp's cameo is worth the time, but now we're just talking about two minutes tops.
Jill has the following traits: She doesn't understand computers at all, she quietly insults almost everything under her breath, she talks loudly on the phone during a movie, she calls women hookers to their face, she openly farts in front of men, and she has an incredibly annoying voice. One more thing, for some reason she's incredibly strong. Seriously, she's crazy strong.
Jill also is loved by Jack's kids (they don't know any better) and liked by Erin (Holmes), Jack's wife.
The message of the movie is ... Jill needs to be loved. That won't stop her from being so annoying though, will it?
We feel sorry for Jack, because Jill is annoying. Unfortunately, Jill looks SO MUCH like Sandler, that you have serious trouble not connecting the dots and blaming Sandler/Jack for the mere existence of Jill.
On top of the character issues I clearly have, the film is edited together with extreme sloppiness. Gaps seem to be missing, which is a blessing in disguise since the film is only 93 minutes long, and could have been more. One example of this is Gary (Rohan Chand) who is Jack and Erin's adopted Indian son, likes to tape things to his body. It's never explored, but that's not the point. If you've seen the trailer, you've seen Gary punch Jill, while he has a pepper shaker taped to his forehead. Well, that pepper shaker appears in about two seconds, out of nowhere. That's poor editing.
I don't want to rant that everyone is stupid if they like this movie, or that Sandler shouldn't be allowed to make movies. I just want to spend my time with films that give me some moments of joy. Jack and Jill gave me none, except for Al Pacino's idea. Burn this!
FINAL SCORE: 1/10