That’s My Boy

Columbia Pictures

Rated R for nudity, sexuality, drug use, ethnic slurs, crude humor and pervasive profanity.

Sandler And Samberg Co-Star In Crude Father-Son Comedy

Anybody familiar with the work of Adam Sandler knows he built his career playing dimwitted characters like Billy Madison (1995), Happy Gilmore (1996) and The Waterboy (1998) in coarse comedies appealing to the lowest common denominator. So, I suppose his loyal fanbase, at least, won’t be disappointed by this latest offering, a raunchy bottom-feeder revolving around yet another pea-brained protagonist

If you’re wondering, That’s My Boy is not a remake of the Jerry Lewis/Dean Martin college football classic, but is based on an original script by David Caspe with a totally different storyline. Here, Sandler stars as Donnie Berger, a prodigal father desperate for a reunion and shot at redemption with his estranged son, Han Solo (Andy Samberg).

Trouble is Han was so ashamed of being the product of the statutory rape of an adolescent by a junior high school teacher (Eva Amurri Martino) that he changed his name and disappeared under the radar the first chance he got. And, while his unremorseful mother was sentenced to a long prison term for statutory rape, his slacker of a father never really amounted to anything after exploiting his 15 minutes of fame for all it was worth.

Fast-forward to the present, where we find Donnie down-on-his-luck and $43,000 in debt to the IRS. He wastes his days soaking his woes and stuffing g-strings at Classy Rick’s Bacon And Leggs, a seedy, suburban strip club where the featured act (Luenell) is a sassy, morbidly-obese sister in pasties.

The plot thickens when Donnie accidentally discovers the new identity of his long-lost son. Turns out “Todd Peterson” is not only a successful hedge fund manager, but on the verge of getting married to a refined socialite (Leighton Meester) from a prominent family. Nevertheless, Donnie decides to track down his son with the help of a fellow has-been, one-hit wonder Vanilla Ice.

Not surprisingly, Todd is embarrassed by the arrival of his trashy dad, and does his best to distance himself from the hopeless case of arrested development. Consequently, much of the ensuing humor is drawn from the shocking contrast of upper and lower class sensibilities.

Like a mean-spirited cross of The Three Stooges and Meet The Parents, That’s My Boy trades in typical Sandler fare with cheap jokes at the expense of easy targets: minorities, the disabled and the mentally-challenged, the most vulnerable members of society, in general. When you factor in the profusion of profanity, the graphic sexuality and the cringe-inducing celebration of pedophilia, it all adds up to a tasteless waste of celluloid of no redeeming value.

 

Poor (0 stars)

Running time: 114 minutes

 

The Girl From The Naked Eye

Naedomi Media

Rated R for violence, sexuality, ethnic slurs and pervasive profanity.

Gambler Goes Vigilante After Girlfriend’s Murder In Grisly Revenge Flick

Jake (Jason Yee) is a guy who let his gambling debts spiral out of control. Consequently, he considered himself lucky that his bookie was willing to let himself work off his debt by serving as a chauffeur and bodyguard for a mob-owned escort service run by a pimp named Simon (Ron Yuan) out of a whorehouse called the Naked Eye.

Over the course of his brief tenure there, Jake develops feelings for a sweet, 16-year-old runaway, Sandy (Samantha Streets), the proverbial hooker with a heart of gold. However, before their relationship has a chance to blossom, Sandy turns up dead.

In the wake of the grim discovery, it becomes clear that nobody’s interested in solving the gruesome murder. So, Jake decides to take the law into his own hands, and proceeds to leave a bloody trail in his quest for the truth.

That is the basic plotline of The Girl From The Naked Eye, an ambitious neo-noir by 25-year-old David Ren, a wunderkind who shot his directorial debut while still a teenager with the romantic comedy Shanghai Kiss (2007). Here, he makes the most of a modest budget via a visually-captivating whodunit laced with highly-stylized martial arts action.

The movie’s play-by-play is narrated Pulp Fiction-style by the picture’s revenge-minded protagonist played by Jason Yee. The former kickboxing champ also orchestrated the acrobatic fight sequences, and proves himself far more adapt at delivering punches than delivering dialogue.

A compelling chop-socky made in America, featuring a homegrown matinee idol who might very well blossom into the next Bruce Lee.

 

Very Good (3 stars)

Running time: 84 minutes

 

OPENING THIS WEEK

Kam’s Kapsules:

For movies opening June 22, 2012

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (R for brief sexuality and pervasive violence). Screen adaptation of Seth Grahame-Smith’s revisionist historical novel based on Honest Abe’s (Benjamin Walker) supposed secret diary relating how he saved the day when bloodthirsty vampires attempted to enslave the people of the United States. With Anthony Mackie, Dominic Cooper and Mary Elizabeth Winstead.

Brave (PG for scary action and rude humor). Animated Pixar adventure set in a mythical Scottish kingdom about a headstrong princess (Kelly Macdonald) who discovers the true meaning of bravery while undoing a curse on her family. Voice cast includes Julie Walters, Emma Thompson and Craig Ferguson.

The Invisible War (Unrated). Investigative expose’ uncovering the rape epidemic inside the U.S. military, including interviews with some of the approximately 30 percent of female soldiers who have been victims of a sexual assault.

Kumaré (Unrated). Blind faith documentary about an Arizona con man who cultivated a devoted following by posing as an Indian guru until he decided to reveal his true identity to his disappointed disciples at the peak of his popularity.

The Last Ride (PG-13 for profanity, fighting, smoking and mature themes). Music-driven biopic dedicated to the last days in the life of the late, country music icon Hank Williams (Henry Thomas). With Kaley Cuoco, Jesse James and Senator Fred Thompson.

Nate & Margaret (Unrated). Fact-based drama about the unlikely friendship that blossomed between a 19-year-old, gay film student (Tyler Ross) and a matronly, 52-year-old waitress-turned-standup comic (Natalie West). Supporting cast includes Conor McCahill, Gaby Hoffmann and Charles Solomon, Jr.

Ordinary Miracles (Unrated). Shutterbug documentary, narrated by Campbell Scott, paying tribute to members of the Photo League who captured life in New York neighborhoods by camera over the 15-year period from 1936-1951.

Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World (R for profanity, sexual references, drug use and brief violence). Apocalyptic road flick about a just-abandoned married man (Steve Carell) who falls in love with a neighbor (Keira Knightley) while searching for his high school sweetheart in anticipation of the imminent impact of an approaching asteroid. With Melanie Lynskey, Adam Brody and Gillian Jacobs.

To Rome With Love (R for sexuality). Woody Allen wrote, directed and stars in this serendipitous comedy, set in Italy, revolving around an ensemble embroiled in a variety of predicaments. Cast includes Ellen Page, Jesse Eisenberg, Greta Gerwig, Penelope Cruz, Alec Baldwin, Roberto Benigni and Carol Alt. (In English and Italian with subtitles)

 

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