Plot Details: This opinion reveals minor details about the movie's plot.
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One thing can be said of the movies Adam Sandler has made since leaving SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE. They've all been funny and offered some decent laughs without going to far over in being offensive. That being said, there are always those borderline moments and in GROWN UPS they all seem to revolve around breast feeding.
GROWN UPS is the story of a group of friends who won a basketball championship 30 years ago. Having grown up (and apart) they are reunited for the funeral of their beloved coach. As each responds to the phone call, we are introduced to who they are now.
Sandler is a hot shot agent in Hollywood married to Salma Hayek and with three children, two spoiled brat boys and a precious little girl. Kevin James is married to Maria Bello and has two children, a brat girl and a 4 year old boy who still breast feeds (don't worry, I'm not spoiling anything for you if you've seen the trailer). Chris Rock is married to Maya Rudolph and has taken on the role of underappreciated home maker to her bread winner position. Fortunately he has two normal children but also an obnoxious mother in law. Rob Schneider had fulfilled his fantasies of being with an older woman and is married to Joyce Van Patten, very much his senior. Both of them are into the whole new age style of living. And rounding out the group is David Spade, the loner of the bunch, the perennial bachelor who seems to be happy but is the one missing out more than any other.
Gathering for the funeral old relationships return as the group razzes each other, teasing and picking on the weakest link even though there is a genuine affection between them all. Once the funeral itself is concluded, they all gather at the cottage where they had their victory dinner to spend the weekend together.
But its not the same as it once was. Where they had fun and found so much to do at the cabin 30 years prior, their children are bored. Filled with a life of video games and instant gratification for their wants, these children have no imagination, no spark. But their fathers make the decision to show them that they can have a good time outside or just being with friends.
It's slow going but the kids gradually come around. Face it, once the premise was established you knew that they would. And as they realize there is more to life than the creature comforts they've become used to, the kids actually have fun as do the adults. Trips to the water park, basketball at the cabin and paper cup phones offer them all a good time.
But there's a question still in play. The big game that cemented their bond had one kid who claimed that Sandler was standing on the line when he made his last shot and that they didn't truly win. And now after all these years, that grown up (played by Colin Quinn) wants revenge and challenges them to a rematch. At first reluctant to do so, they finally take on the challenge at the big Fourth of July celebration. Who wins? Watch and see.
Like most of Sandler's films in the past, the comedy is sporadic but always offers some decent laughs. Sadly some of the best ones were visible in the trailer for this film and that was so heavily promoted that I doubt anyone reading this didn't see it at least once or twice prior to the film being released. But there are enough other yucks to make this movie a fun watch and will elicit more than a few chuckles before the final scene.
The film feels like a reunion of sorts for a number of SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE vets as well as the characters. Along for the ride is James (one of Sandler's real life best friends) who holds his own with this group. The comedic timing and styles developed on that show are seen throughout here as each member is given his own unique role in the story.
Amazingly enough, not one of the group takes center stage here and that's a good thing. The story is about a group of kids grown up, not a single one above all the rest. The focus stays on that theme throughout.
Is the movie an Oscar contender? No way. Is it going to be the one movie all of these actors are remembered for? Doubtful. But it is a movie that will entertain and hold your interest from beginning to end without sitting there holding you finger poised over the fast forward button. It's light, it's fluffy and it delivers everything you'd expect from an Adam Sandler movie. Definitely worth a rental and in the end, perhaps even one that you'll want to add to your collection.
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Viewing Format: DVD
Video Occasion: Better than Watching TV
Suitability For Children: Suitable for Children up Ages 8