A movie that just goes with it

Feb. 13, 2011, 7:49 p.m. | By Melodi Anahtar | 11 years, 3 months ago

"Just Go with It" simply follows the comedic formula

It was only a matter of time before Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler starred in the same movie; the two likable comedians always seemed like they would click on screen. They have both been on TV shows, began careers around the same time and shared co-stars such as Ben Stiller. Yet their inevitable collaboration has not produced stellar results, but merely a standard romantic comedy without anything to separate it from the rest.

After leaving a superficial woman, Danny Maccabee (Sandler) discovers that by becoming a plastic surgeon, wearing his old wedding ring and telling lies about his ex-wife, he is able to pick up almost any girl he likes. After running wild with the idea for years he meets Palmer Dodge (Brooklyn Decker), a beautiful, younger woman. But when she finds his ring by accident, she is appalled by the idea of being the other woman and demands to meet Danny's family. Instead of telling her the truth, he says he is in the process of divorcing his ex-wife. To keep the lie alive, he asks his assistant Katherine Murphy (Aniston) to pose as his wife, which leads to a whole new web of lies.

Director Dennis Dugan and Sandler have teamed up numerous times in the past. Sandler's love for silly comedies and Dugan's love of directing them has resulted in such popular comedies such as "Happy Gilmore" and "Big Daddy." The key to their success is that their movies are for entertainment purpose and are not too serious. Still, despite the fact that "Just Go with It" follows the same basic comedic formula as the duo's other feel-good movies, it lacks a consistent tone.

At times, "Just Go with It" tries to be heartfelt, like when Aniston's character begins to feel like she is in love and does not know what to do about it. However, this emotion is very much overwhelmed by the rest of the movie and its raunchy jokes that push the boundaries of the movie's PG-13 rating. During some of these jokes, the romantic feeling that ought to be present in a romantic comedy is lost, which makes the consequential love scenes seem out of place. It is almost as if Dugan and Sandler were trying to get the best of both worlds, but just could not manage to mesh them together.

Only Aniston's on-screen family stands out among the mediocrity. The two young actors who play her children are intelligent and very funny and Bailee Madison, in particular, brings light to each of her scenes with her character's fake British accent and dramatic persona.

Aniston is versatile throughout the whole film and skillfully plays the mom, assistant and snotty divorcé. However, between Aniston's ability to juggle comedy with emotion and the jokes that the child actors provide, Sandler tends to get overshadowed by the talent around him. It would have been refreshing to watch this movie without Sandler as the primary focus.

One comedic aspect that the movie gets right is its play on plastic surgery. Maccabee is a plastic surgeon, so the controversial field is frequently showcased throughout the movie. One would assume that a movie featuring bikini-clad women in many scenes would be praising the field, but "Just Go with It" takes the opposite approach. From the woman with a roaming eyebrow to the man who can no longer laugh because his numerous surgeries have rendered his face motionless, the playful jabs at the prevalence of plastic surgery in Hollywood are actually well executed. However, it is also a bit ironic that Nicole Kidman is in the movie despite her previous surgeries.

Overall, "Just Go with It" was moderately funny and provides an opportunity to see a handful of women, including Aniston and Decker, in bikinis. It is formulaic and predictable, but ultimately accomplishes the objective of any average romantic comedy to provide an escape from reality. This is not a movie that will evoke any deep contemplations or revelations, but it works if one just goes with it.

Just Go with It (116 minutes) is rated PG-13 for frequent crude and sexual content, partial nudity, brief drug references and language. Now playing in theatres everywhere.

Melodi Anahtar. Melodi Anahtar loves anything having to do with science, music or TV. Her favorite vacation spot is the Dominican Republic and her favorite city is Boston (go Red Sox). She can usually be found wasting time in her room, either watching "Grey's Anatomy" or reading … More »

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