JUST GO WITH IT
By Gary Murray
Starring Adam Sandler, Jennifer Aniston, Brooke Decker and Nicole Kidman
Written by Alan Leob and Timothy Dowling
Directed by Dennis Dugan
Running time 1 hr 56 min
MPAA Rating PG
Selig Film Rating Matinee
Adam Sandler has always been a hit-or-miss performer. He has made scads of money with juvenile characters, man-boys who eventually find the maturity of age. Now that he's getting older, he is the seasoned man-boy who looks a little silly now finding maturity. The latest romantic comedy from his company is Just Go With It.
Our little play starts many years ago with a very young Danny (Adam Sandler) finding out that on the day of his wedding, his future wife has been and will continue to cheat on him. Distraught, he goes to a bar with the wedding ring on his finger. He finds that single women go for a distraught married guy. Many years (and one major nose job) later, Danny is still doing the scam of using the ring to bed young women.
His faithful assistant Katherine (Jennifer Aniston) knows all about his peccadillos but still cares for her boss and partner. She is a divorced lady with two kids of her own. Wearing tennis shoes and scrubs, Katherine is more the kind of woman who is looked over than looked upon.
One night at a party, Adam meets Palmer (Brooke Decker) a middle-school teacher that every boy on the planet wishes was in the classroom. After a night on the beach, Palmer hands Adam his pants and finds his faux wedding ring. She is appalled that he is a married guy and gives him the brush off.
Danny tells Katherine that Palmer is "the one" and wants to do anything to win her back. They concoct a little white lie. Katherine agrees to play the part of his divorcing wife Devlin, the ultimate California gold-digger. At the meeting, Katherine's phone goes off. It is her kids. Little white lie #2–Danny claims that Katherine's kids are his. This leads to hiring her little ones to play parts in deceit.
Well, the deceit gets bigger and Danny is conned by the kiddos to take them all to Hawaii for a family vacation. Matters get even more crazed when Katherine's sorority sister is on the island. She is the real Devlin (Nichole Kidman). Katherine begins down the path of lying by claiming that Danny is her husband.
All of these threads criss-cross until every characters is caught up in the web of lies. Just Go With It keeps going and going to the typical romantic comedy ending.
Jennifer Aniston has had few hits in the decade post-Friends. This is a role that should give her some clout with producers. She is genuinely funny and charming, playing a character more than just being Jennifer Aniston.
Adam Sandler has done this kind of role so many times he could probably do it in his sleep. Even though the bloom may be slipping in the aged romantic comedy star, he can still do dumb stunts and pratfalls while keeping the love-light glowing. There is nothing new here but it still works in a familiar way.
Nicole Kidman basically has an oversized cameo with her Devlin, the villainess of the piece. She is the little miss perfect from Katherine's past and plays the part to the nth degree. She is an ice queen, but a genuinely funny one.
The real find is Brooke Decker as Palmer. The Sports Illustrated swim suit model keeps pace with her much more seasoned cast, delivering jokes and situations against actors who have been behind the camera for decades. She is charming and winsome with just a bit of flirty.
Just Go With It is surprisingly charming, with a narrative that still manages to get a few different twists and turns along the beaten path that is the romantic comedy. It is a Valentine's Day treat that will please all the couples who include the cinema with their bon-bons.