Thursday, April 14, 2011

Now-a-Dollar April 15

Posted By on April 14, 2011, 8:04 AM

If you're a fan of low-brow comedy with a sentimental side, you've got more than one option at local second-run theaters. ---

The Farrelly brothers -- who once upon a time set the standard for R-rated comedy lunacy in There's Something About Mary -- continue their run of sporadically funny mediocrity with Hall Pass. Owen Wilson and Saturday Night Live's Jason Sudeikis star as a pair of buddies whose wives give them a one-week-long "get out of marital fidelity free" card, which they subsequently have trouble making use of. A few priceless inappropriate moments ensue, but ultimately the whole mess gets unwieldy and succumbs to the Farrellys generally romantic disposition.

Meanwhile, continuing Adam Sandler's inexplicable run of box-office hits is Just Go With It, in which he plays a plastic surgeon whose pickup ploy of pretending to be (unhappily) married backfires, and he gets his office manager (Jennifer Aniston) to pretend to be his soon-to-be-ex. It's not nearly as crushingly bad as recent Sandler "efforts" like Grown Ups, including more than a few decent laughs, until the general laziness of Sandler and his filmmaking pals takes over and leaves a soggy lump.

And then there's the surprise kiddie success Gnomeo & Juliet, in which garden ornaments come to life, Toy Story-style, to have romances and feuds when no humans are looking. That's about the only thing it has in common with Toy Story, though, as the stridently zany comedy awkwardly tries to combine Shakespeare references with as many Elton John songs (he was an executive producer) as permitted by law. Will it end with a big dance number? Oh yes. Of course it will.

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