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IN SHORT: For single dads and their teenboy sons this Father's Day weekend . . .. [Rated R for Crude Sexual Content Throughout, Nudity, Pervasive Language and Some Drug Use. 114 minutes]
Once upon a time, eighth grader Donny Berger (Justin Weaver) fulfilled the ultimate (fifteen) year old boys fantasy and got to do "it" with the hottest teacher in school. She was Miss McGarricle (Eva Amurri Martino) then. She remained Miss McGarricle for the rest of her days in jail, sentenced for molesting a student. Donny, though, was left with a very special present as a result of that encounter. His name was Todd.
Long story short, once he turned eighteen Todd (Andy Samberg) ditched his father and found a life as a hedge funds trader . . . something financial. There's way too much going on in this story. Anyway, Donny's life (Adam Sandler as the adult Donny) led to a book and a television show and a whole lot of money, virtually all of which has been spent when the IRS comes a knockin' with a tax bill estimated by Donny's accountant slash bookie Jim Nance (Rex Ryan, coach of the NY Jets) to be at least $43 thousand dollars. Donny, having only $43 left of his fortune, places a $20 bet on a longshot Boston marathon runner named Tubby Tuke () and sets off to find his long lost son.
Not that Donny intends to ask for a loan, which no doubt would be refused. No, Donny first goes to a reality show star (Dan Patrick) to pitch a reunion show idea -- alienated son, louse father and jailbird mother. All one big happy family -- with a $50 thousands price tag; as payoff to make it happen. With about three days to pull off the deal, Donny tracks down Todd, who is about to marry the very lovely Jamie (Leighton Meester) on the grounds of the lavish estate owned by boss Steve Spirou (Tony Orlando). Given that Todd has told his family to be that his parents had been "killed in an explosion" when he was but a wee lad, he thinks on his feet and intros his biological dad as his "best friend."
Mixing a lower class louse with a horde of very rich people -- Spirou is so rich he has a copy of Fenway Park in his back yard. Jamie's brother Chad (Milo Ventimiglia) is a Marine. He loves his sister. Jamie's Grandma Delores (Peggy Stewart), a pinup star in her day, is a story unto herself. Todd's best friends are his co-worker, Phil, and his wife (Will Forte and Rachel Dratch, with Anna Gasteyer add Sandler's SNL pals to the mix.)
But Donny needs the help of the only man he can trust to reconnect with his son. The help of his best friend, Todd's "Uncle Vanny" (Vanilla Ice) . . . we only hint at our first career in musicradio over in the review of this week's competition, Rock of Ages. We don't think too highly of Vanilla Ice, the musical plagiarist. As a comic actor, here parodying "Vanilla Ice," he acquits himself nicely.
Ice has been working in a shaved ice store of some kind. His boss is Todd Bridges (of Diff'rent Strokes TV fame). giggles. other giggles: 30 years on, Miss McGarricle is now Susan Sarandon. Father McNally, Jamie's priest (James Caan) has anger issues. When Phil throws Todd an Oprah-sanctioned bachelor party (sic), Donny steps in to do it right. Meaning a trip to Classy Rick's Bacon and Legs strip club. There Todd gets dangerously close to all thumpa thumpa over a fine young lady named Brie (singer Ciara). This particular stripper character is not the one you will remember, though. The character you will remember is a "veteran strip club dancer" named Champale (comedienne Luenell)
Ah . . . That's My Boy is similarly stuffed full of stuff. Half an hour after it was done, we remember very little of it. What we do remember . . . given that the film is "R" rated , , , is stuff we can't write about on a family friendly page.
We've said it before and we'll write it down here, acknowledging that we're ripping off another critic's observation: Adam Sandler makes movies for single fathers to take their budding teen boys to see. Conversely, they are the kind of movies underage boys boast of sneaking in to see and that's about the speed of it all. Did we laugh. Yes we did.
On average, a first run movie ticket will run you Ten Bucks. Were Cranky able to set his own price to That's My Boy, he would have paid . . .
Single dads, you know the drill. Single teen boys ditto. Everyone else, yeah, you'll laugh. Just don't tell your friends <vbg>
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