Review published
February 13, 2004
A.J.'s Rating:  3 Sandler Stars
50 First Dates
Directed By:  Peter Segal
Written By:  George Wing
Starring: Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore, Sean Astin, Rob Schneider
MPAA:  Rated PG-13 on appeal for crude sexual humor and drug references.
Movie reviews, guides, games, news, and more!
"Not just your basic, average, everyday, ordinary,
run-of-the-mill, ho-hum entertainment website."
A.J.'s Place - Main Menu

    Wedding Singer couple Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore have teamed up again, this time in Hawaii for 50 First Dates.  Aloha, romance and comedy!
    Adam Sandler plays Henry Roth.  Henry works at the local aqua-park, taking care of the walrus, the penguins, and other creatures of the sea.  In his spare time, he takes care of many of Hawaii's lonely female tourists.  Henry figures that dating tourists is a win-win situation, since it gives them an exciting romantic fling to talk about back home, while saving him the bother of actually having to commit to anything even remotely resembling a relationship.  Kupua forbid he ever falls for a local girl!
    Enter Drew Barrymore, who plays local girl, Lucy Whitmore.  Lucy is a perfectly normal, happy young woman.  Well, normal aside from one little problem.  You see, just over a year ago, Lucy was in a car accident.  She's okay, except that she suffered a bit of brain trauma.  As a result, Lucy can no longer retain new memories.  Remember Sammy Jenkis?  Now, Lucy wakes up each morning thinking it's the day after the last day she can remember.  The last day she remembers, of course, is the day before the accident.  So as not to upset her, Lucy's family and friends have gone to great measures to ensure that this illusion is upheld.  For the past year, Lucy has blissfully re-lived the same day over and over, that is, until Henry showed up.
    Okay, so we have the wacky romantic situation in place.  All we need now is the comedy.  Unfortunately, much of what passes for funny in 50 First Dates involves not our cerebrally challenged lovebirds, but their cast of odd and zany supporting characters.  Among them are Sean Astin as Lucy's lisping, steroid-addicted brother, Doug, Rob Schneider as Henry's crude, pot-smoking Hawaiian buddy, Ula, and Henry's creepy androgenous co-worker, er, um, ah, let's just call it "Pat". 
    While the scenes featuring Adam and Drew are quite entertaining, as far as quirky romantic chemistry is concerned, the rest of this movie may elicit more groans than grins.  The problem is that, for a romantic comedy, 50 First Dates often dips into gross-out territory for its laughs.  Too bad, since the more innocent tone set by its leads produced a lot of fun, sweet moments.  
    What I found most refreshing was that, for the first time in my memory, Adam Sandler plays a character with absolutely no anger issues!  How the heck did that happen?  And to top things off, the easy-going Sandler even turns in a surprisingly solid performance.  Nice job, Adam!  Now, to really surprise me, he should try making a movie without anyone he's already worked with a dozen times before... that would be impressive.
    Anyway, to sum up, if you enjoyed The Wedding Singer, chances are you'll really like about half of this movie.  If you enjoyed Little Nicky, you'll probably really like the other half.  However, if you're one of the few who enjoyed both The Wedding Singer as well as Little Nicky, then hey, no worries!  50 First Dates should be quite memorable, indeed!