Sunday, June 15, 2008

movie review: don't see the Zohan either

"You Don't Mess With the Zohan" is an ugly little movie. Adam Sandler has made some cute movies, but he has an unfortunate tendency to confuse offensiveness with humor. In this movie, he goes for extra offensiveness. We get treated to several shots of his bare butt, once with a fish between the cheeks. And there is an endless parade of old women that he has sex with. We get to see him fondling them and rubbing his crotch against them.

One would hope that the scenes that make you want to get up and leave the theater would at least be balanced out by some really funny scenes, but no such luck. The funniest scene is the fight scene in the previews, and the shorter preview version is funnier than the version in the movie. Other moments of attempted hilarity include badminton with a hand grenade, two old English sheep dogs made up with odd hair styles, and watching a man eat humus using his reading glasses as a spoon. Humus was a lame running gag throughout the movie.

And then there were the Palestinian terrorists who were just basically good guys who need some encouragement to make peace. They don't deserve to be attacked; only mean people attack terrorists. Of course plenty of other people deserved to be attacked: rich white men trying to build a mall and poor white men who believe in the second Amendment and middle-class white men who lose their tempers when they are in a car accident. Palestinian terrorists were a big part of the movie, but you never heard one of them uttering words of genocide or racial violence, much less any anti-Semitism. No, Sandler had to find a contrived way to introduce white KKK/Republicans as the Jew-hating racists in the midst of the Palestinian terrorist and terrorist sympathizers.

Yes, a professional terrorist deserves to be treated with respect and reasoned with, but when a white man in a business suit loses his temper after an auto accident you don't try to calm him down, instead you humiliate him and beat him. That's the Zohan way.

Sandler seems to be firmly in the camp of those who think that only whites have the moral capacity for evil. When Palestinians murder children for political ends, they just need to be corrected, rather like a puppy who makes doodoo on the carpet. Just take them outside when they have to go, remove the situation that makes them bad, and they will be perfect little angels.

Besides the offensive scenes, the lack of humor, and the terrorist-supporting message, the move has a predictable plot, tired gags, and an embarrassingly lame romance. I recommend giving it a pass. Seriously, it's not even worth renting when it hits the cheap shelves (which I predict will happen very soon).

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