Just Go With It
- Street Date:
- June 7th, 2011
- Reviewed by:
- Steven Cohen
- Review Date: 1
- May 31st, 2011
- Movie Release Year:
- 117 Minutes
- MPAA Rating:
- Rated PG-13
- Release Country
- United States
The Movie Itself: Our Reviewer's Take
The romantic comedy 'Just Go With It' is a remake of a 1969 film, which itself was adapted from a Broadway play, which was actually based on an earlier French production. So in other words, it's a perfect example of Hollywood taking a chance on fresh, daring, original material. Do you see what I did there? Good. Though there are some truly talented people involved, this formulaic movie commits the one real cardinal sin of so many comedies (far too many of them involving a latter day Adam Sandler), it's just not very funny.
The story follows a middle-aged plastic surgeon named Danny (Adam Sandler) who meets a very young and gorgeous blond bombshell named Palmer (Brooklyn Decker), and even though the actors have absolutely no chemistry, the two take a romantic stroll along a beach and soon sleep together, waking up the next morning as the sun comes up. Yeah, seems pretty reasonable to me. From here a few miscalculated lies eventually send us down a path that requires Danny to pretend he has a soon to be ex-wife in order to keep the girl. Seems a little contrived, but fine, I'll just go with it. Seeing no other options, he drafts his assistant Katherine (Jennifer Aniston) to play the role, and after a few more miscalculated lies, Katherine's children become part of the ruse and the whole gang ends up vacationing in Hawaii together. Despite my better judgment, I still just went with it.
Though his recent track record has certainly been less than stellar, I'm still a fan of Sandler, so I went into this film with an open mind. Unfortunately, from the moment the opening scene started and I got a look at Sandler's character in a horrible prosthetic nose, I knew any hopes of quality were dashed. Along with the nose, other terrible Jewish stereotypes are played for laughs in this scene, and as a Jew, I was horribly offended. Not because of the actual stereotypes mind you, but because it just wasn't funny. If you're going to make self deprecating Jew jokes, they damn well better be funny. The lack of laughs here basically sets up the remainder of the film, which tries to form humor out of terrible, clichéd situations and been there done that gags.
Though the cast attempts to make the most out of what they have to work with, nearly all the jokes just fall flat. Even Sandler, who is usually reliable for at least some amusement, seems to be sleepwalking through the proceedings. Sports Illustrated model turned "actress" Brooklyn Decker does a decent enough job in her debut role, though the part doesn't really call for much beyond eye candy. Aniston actually fares the best here and brings the most depth to her character, though really that isn't saying much.
The only real saving grace of the film are the two talented child actors, Bailee Madison and Griffin Gluck, who play Danny's pretend children. Some of the very few laughs to be found come from their characters as they try to manipulate the strange and elaborate situation they've been put into. Their chemistry with Sandler is also fun to watch and his scenes with them are among the few where he actually seems to be awake. Also of minor note, is comedian Nick Swardson who plays Sandler's cousin and best friend. While not exactly a highlight, he does manage to scrounge up a few laughs out of some pretty mediocre material.
'Just Go With It' is an assembly line romantic comedy that just isn't very funny, and its few genuine attempts at sweetness are sullied by the rest of its mostly soulless material. By constantly regurgitating films like this into theaters, Hollywood (and Sandler) is essentially saying, "Yes, we know it's not that good and offers nothing you haven't seen before, but, just go with it." Well, you know what? No, damn it! I will not just go with it. I am tired of just going with it, and I think most audiences are too. Instead of putting out mediocre nonsense that we have to just go with, why not actually make something new, or at least good? Please?
The Video: Sizing Up the Picture
'Just Go With It' is presented in a 1080p/AVC transfer in the 1.85:1 aspect ratio. Shot partly on location in Hawaii, the video here features some pretty landscapes and looks quite good but not fantastic.
The print is of course pristine, and though shot in part on film, there is no real visible grain. Detail is fairly strong, and while not exactly soft, the image does lack that razor sharp quality found in some other newer releases. Still, certain scenes, especially those set in Hawaii, do feature a nice level of depth. Most impressive are the colors, which pop out of the screen with an amazing vibrancy. Contrast is also fairly strong but black levels are a hair light in a few nighttime scenes.
This is a good but not overly impressive transfer that shows off the beautiful shooting locations well.
The Audio: Rating the Sound
Audio is presented in an English and French DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track, as well as a Spanish and an additional English Audio Description track in Dolby Digital 5.1. Subtitle options include English, English SDH, French, and Spanish. This is a decent but not terribly lively track.
Dialogue is the main focus here and is always crisp and clean. Directionality is minimal but present when appropriate. Surround use is also pretty subdued with only some music cues and a few effects being sent to the rears. Dynamic range and bass are pretty flat but well suited for a romantic comedy. Balance is good and again places emphasis on the dialogue, though it would be nice if any of it was actually worth hearing.
This is a basic but appropriate track that fits the movie just fine.
The Supplements: Digging Into the Good Stuff
Sony has included a decent amount of supplements including two commentaries and several short featurettes. Unfortunately though, like the movie, they aren't terribly entertaining and don't really offer any substance beyond standard Hollywood promotional fluff. All of the supplements are provided in 1080p and Dolby Digital 2.0 with English and Spanish subtitles unless otherwise noted.
- Commentary with Adam Sandler, Nick Swardson, and the Filmmakers - This is a pretty basic and uninteresting track featuring Sandler, Swardson, and… some other guys. They aren't listed on the menu and don't actually introduce themselves, so I'm not completely sure who they were or how they were involved in the film. Either way, it doesn't really matter, as the group of guys basically spend the entire time pointing out jokes they found funny and cameos from people that they know. Other topics touched upon include a swear jar that was used on set, the merits of the fictional party game "Talking Points" that's featured in the movie, and the trickery used to cut together scenes shot partly in Hawaii and partly in Culver City. A pretty boring track and despite the funny participants, there really aren't many laughs or insights to be found from their comments.
- Commentary with Director Dennis Dugan - Though a little more informative than the previous track, this commentary is also pretty disposable. Dugan seems nice enough and offers a few amusing bits of dry humor and trivia but takes frequent pauses, letting the film speak for itself, which really isn't a good idea. He also tends to go off on unrelated tangents including quite a bit of talk about his next Sandler collaboration 'Jack and Jill' and his personal philosophy that there are only two kinds of people in the world -- those that unscrew and then rescrew the caps on their water bottles, and those that unscrew and leave it unscrewed (I'm a rescrewer, in case anyone is interested, though really, even I'm not). Other bits of trivia expanded upon include stories about helping child actress Bailee Madison craft her English accent, some pretty subtle uses of CG, and more on the locations used and cameos from random people he knows. Basically, this isn't worth much of a listen, even for fans of the movie.
- Deleted Scenes (HD, 17 min) - Sixteen deleted scenes are provided here available to watch separately or together. Like the movie, there isn't a lot to like here, though Swardson frantically kissing his fallen yarmulke and a nice 'Big Daddy' reference are mildly amusing.
- Laughter is Contagious (HD, 5 min) - This is your standard blooper reel showing the cast flubbing lines and laughing. Well, at least they had fun.
- The Perfect Couple: Jen and Adam (HD, 6 min) - This is the first of many generic behind the scenes featurettes that focus on specific actors or aspects of the production. Here we are treated to several interviews with cast and crew talking about how wonderful Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston are. Good to know.
- Shooting Hawaii (HD, 6 min) - Here the focus is on getting to work in beautiful Hawaii and scouting for the many pretty locations featured.
- Dolph-Not The One From Rocky IV (HD, 6 min) - Another featurette, this time focusing on Nick Swardson, that is filled with more compliments and some anecdotes about crafting his character.
- Grand Wailea Promo (HD, 7 min) - This is a commercial for the resort featured in the movie. Presented in 1080i.
HD Bonus Content: Any Exclusive Goodies in There?
- Adoni Living Plastic (HD, 3 min) - This features Kevin Nealon in character and full makeup from the movie going around LA with a hidden camera. Not terribly amusing as no one really seems to be taking him seriously.
- Along Came a Prop Guy (HD, 3 min) - This is incredibly exciting footage of crew members placing a plastic spider on each other throughout the course of shooting.
- Decker's Got Gas (HD, 2 min) - This is an embarrassing attempt at a practical joke that sees Brooklyn Decker use a farting app on her phone to try and trick Sandler during a quiet scene together. It doesn't go as planned and is actually even less funny and amusing than it sounds.
- Kevin Nealon: The Plastic Man (HD, 6 min) - Here we get a behind the scenes look at the makeup process used to transform Kevin Nealon into his plastic surgery addicted character. The actor also discusses coming up with the accent he uses. Real stimulating material.
- What's A Dugan (HD, 5 min) - Now we turn the focus to director Dennis Dugan with more empty gushing and compliments. Dugan seems like a nice guy and he has made a few genuinely funny films, but unfortunately this just isn't one of them.
- Look Who Else Is In This Movie (HD, 3 min) - Here the focus is on some of the minor cameos including the usually funny Rachel Dratch, sportscaster Dan Patrick (who actually is fairly amusing in this movie), and… Heidi Montag. Yes, Heidi Montag. The filmmakers should really be ashamed of themselves for that one.
- Sneaky Kiki & Bart the Water Fart (HD, 2 min) - This features Bailee Madison and Griffin Gluck discussing how much fun they had making the movie.
- The Not So Perfect Couple (HD, 4 min) - Nicole Kidman and Dave Matthews are the focus here as we are subjected -- I mean treated -- to more interviews and behind the scenes footage that don't really have much to say.
- Decker's First Role (HD, 4 min) - Brooklyn Decker takes the spotlight here with more platitudes and behind the scenes footage that features some more shots of her frolicking in her bikini.
- Previews (HD) - Trailers for several other Sony releases.
- MovieIQ - This is a special mode you can watch the film in which connects to the internet to give access to trivia, filmographies, and various other production info.
- BD-Live - Sony has included standard BD-Live connectivity that as of now simply leads to a page with more trailers.
In the end, 'Just Go With It' is just not good and serves as a perfect example of lazy writing and mediocre direction. The video and audio are pretty solid though, and while plentiful, the supplements are all fairly worthless. Basically, this is one to avoid.
- BD-50 Blu-ray Disc
- 1080p/AVC MPEG-4
- English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
- French DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
- Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
- English, English SDH, French, Spanish
- 2 Audio Commentaries
- 3 Featurettes
- Deleted Scenes
- Blooper Reel
Exclusive HD Content
- 9 Featurettes
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