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50 First Dates (2004)

Originally Reviewed
  Wednesday February 27, 2008

It might be a little shocking like I'm actually going to admit to really liking an Adam Sandler film and even more shocking it's a film that co-stars Drew Barrymore. I'm not meaning this to imply that these two are horrible actors in any sense, but they're probably two of the most one-talent actors on the planet. Separately these two put out one average to mediocre comedy after another, together they seem to be gold; The Wedding Singer is proof of that, now 50 First Dates is the other. I truly think this film is an overlooked romantic comedy classic, and one of the few Adam Sandler films you might actually tear up while watching, and for once it's not because it's so bad!

Adam Sandler plays Henry Roth a resident of Hawaii who when not working at the local aquarium or on his boat is showing vacationing single women a "good" time, then ditching them as they're about to leave by giving them some bogus excuse to why a relationship won't work. It's clear Henry has commitment issues and doesn't want to be tied down, but that all changes when he meets Lucy Whitmore, a local girl who might just be what Henry needs to turn his life around. Henry and Lucy hit it off right away but the next day she completely blows him off and acts like she's never met him... well in her mind she never has. A year prior Lucy was in a car accident and sustained a head injury which affected her short term memory causing her to forget everything that happened the day before, and making her think that everyday is the day of the accident.

While everyone around Lucy is trying to support her delusion, Henry thinks it would be a better idea to try and help her live a real life instead of constantly revolving in a repetitious loop in her mind. This begins Henry's difficult task of making Lucy fall in love with him over and over again, a task that not only becomes daunting but emotionally exhausting for Henry. While you have to admire the tenacity of Henry, how long can he possibly make a relationship like this work?

50 First Dates is a strange story that finds it's similarities in the classic film Groundhog Day. What made me like this film the most is that the story has a lot of heart, and most of that has to be attributed to Drew Barrymore who did a fantastic job (something I'm shocked I'm actually saying), the emotion that she puts into the character makes the story believable. Sandler on the other hand is Sandler, he can't play a different character and even in this film he manages to throw out a few raunchy jokes, mostly at the expense of Rob Schneider (whose plays a completely pointless character as always). The real show stealer is Sean Astin who plays Lucy's lisp talking, steroid taking, semi retarded brother Doug. Astin is hilarious and some of the one liner’s thrown at him by Sandler were great. Overall, 50 First Dates is a must see for romantic comedy fans, put your feelings about Sandler and Barrymore aside (I don't much like them either), simply put the story works with them and it ends up being a touching and humorous little romantic comedy that I think gets pushed aside because Sandler's name is attached to it. 

8/10

3 comments:

  1. I definitely don't like Sandler, but for reasons unknown, I do like Drew Barrymore. However I didn't really like this movie, although I like most of Drew's romantic comedies, again for reasons unknown :)

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  2. 50 First Dates was a solid rom-com. Funny and touching even and despite of the stigma associated with both leads.

    What can one say about Rob Schneider? Truly incredible that he got paid to be in so many movies.

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  3. @Castor - Schneider only has a movie career because he's a friend of Sandler, and Sandler seems to be a good guy when it comes to giving his friends jobs, that's the only reason.

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