“Blended” shows remnants of the Sandler/Barrymore spark, but it seems the duo’s charm has just ran out. Hello Moviegoers! With the premise of a word/phrase horribly overused in the film, blended, meaning stepmoms, stepdads, and other non-traditional family groupings, it seems the film may attempt to connect with the new kind of family. Unfortunately the movie doesn’t really start until thirty minutes after the tape rolls, and even then it lacks humor, originality, and spark.
Blended ( 1 ½ sweet potatoes out of four) Stars: Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore, Bella Thorne, Kevin Nealon, Terry Crews, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Kyle Red Silverstein, and Joel McHale; Director: Frank Coraci Genre: Romantic Comedy; Rated: PG-13; Running Time: 117 minutes; Opens: Friday, May 23rd, 2014.
Lauren (Drew Barrymore) is a divorced single parent of two boys who goes on a terrible blind date, at Hooters of all places with Jim (Adam Sandler). After using a fake emergency to leave the date, Jim goes home to his three daughters who are all struggling with the loss of their mother to cancer. Lauren’s best friend, Jen (Wendi McLendon-Covey) bails on an Africa spring break trip with her boyfriend, refusing to meet his five kids, and Lauren decides to take the vacation with her two kids. Coincidentally, Lauren’s boyfriend is Jim’s boss, and he asks for the second room on the Africa trip and the pair end up on the same vacation.
Once in Africa, the pair attraction or at least dissolution of dislike grows because of their kids. Hilary or Larry, as called by her father, (Bella Thorne) is often mistaken as a boy and her barber and men’s clothing don’t do much to help that. Lauren helps her to grow up and win over a vacation crush. Meanwhile, Tyler (Kyle Red Silverstein), Lauren’s son, gets some worthwhile baseball hitting advice from Jim. Additionally, the other kids suffer from other problems which vary from visions of her dead mother to fetish attraction to his baby-sitter. As the families start learning, they are better together than apart Lauren and Jim start to “blend.”
In a movie, I allow one coincidence any more than that is not just bad writing, it’s horrible writing. This film has several most notably the fact that Jen is dating Dick and Jim says “Oh, you mean Dick Theodopolus? That’s my boss” I literally cringed when that happen. I mean how many people in the world are named, Dick. Also things that aren’t funny, ‘a backyard avalanche’ as an emergency excuse, borderline incest jokes, Africans singing, trophy wives, and music played in order to convey feelings.
“Blended” features all of the rom-com tropes. A coupling that seems not to work, but once they find that one thing they come together. The break-up and apology that brings them together for good, and the obstacles they both face to find love. A good romantic comedy, uses humor and cuteness to gloss over the plot we all know and love. “Blended” fails to do either. I give “Blended” one and a half sweet potatoes out of four.
This is A. P. Richardson for Moviegoers View and I’ll see you after the movies at moviegoersview.com.