With movies, as with parties and dinners at restaurants, evaluations are influenced by expectations. Going in to Blended, I knew that Adam Sandler movies have been less than wonderful in recent years. On the other hand, Sandler and Drew Barrymore made two highly entertaining movies together, 1998’s The Wedding Singer and 2004’s 50 First Dates.
Happily, Blended conjures up the vibe of those two Adam-Drew films, rather than those of That’s My Boy, Don’t Mess With The Zohan, Jack and Jill, etc.
Not that Blended is an award-winner, but it is cute and funny. It’s a sweet love story whose outcome is pre-ordained. Jim (Sandler) and Lauren (Barrymore) are single parents. They have a terrible blind date—at Hooters—but meet again in a store where they help each other out. Through a strange and highly unlikely turn of events, they end up sharing a suite—with their kids—at a resort in South Africa.
They try to make the best of it. Jim, Lauren and all their kids enjoy the resort’s amusements including safaris, ostrich rides and parasailing—with comic results.
Here’s some parental guidance. Blended appears to be a comedy for the whole family, like Cheaper By The Dozen or Yours, Mine and Ours. But it is rated PG-13 and contains some naughty content you might find offensive for your preteens. Some of it will go right over their heads but other parts, such as a shot of humping hippos, are rather direct.
Also in the cast are Sandler’s SNL cohort Kevin Nealon as Eddy and Jessica Lowe as his trophy wife Ginger. Wendy McLendon-Covey of Bridesmaids plays Lauren’s business partner. Joel McHale is Lauren’s smarmy ex-husband. Shaquille O’Neal and Dan Patrick have brief appearances.
Blended is not as good as the earlier Sandler-Barrymore pairings, but it delivers some solid laughs and a happy outcome—and those are good things. It also contains situations most parents—single or married—can relate to.
Maybe the best thing Blended has going for it is the lines will likely be much shorter than those for X-Men and Godzilla.