If you can get through the first 20 minutes of “Blended” — a nonstop regurgitation of old jokes, annoying characters and unfunny ideas — don’t relax. It gets worse.
The new Adam Sandler/Drew Barrymore comedy looks at what happens when two single parents end up on the same vacation through an absurd and contrived plot line. They decide to stay together in the same room (don’t ask) so they can enjoy the trip to Africa.
It’s at that point where the movie should have been called “Deported” so we could send these two unlikable people — and their equally unlikable offspring — home. Instead, director Frank Coraci keeps trying to milk something funny out of the painfully trite script by Ivan Menchell and Clare Sera.
The film might not have been such a disappointment if Sandler and Barrymore hadn’t had so much chemistry in “50 First Dates” and “The Wedding Singer.” None of the connections they made in those films are present here. They just muddle through the film, pausing long enough to let Sandler improvise a few jokeless lines.
As if the film wasn’t enough of a disaster, the very funny Wendi McLendon-Covey is wasted; Shaquille O’Neal — whose acting is the only thing worse than his free-throw shooting — is asked to create laughs; and Terry Crews plays an African lounge singer in a running joke that quickly loses its punch.
The writers had so little new and funny to write about that plenty of jokes get repeated.
The only head slapping here should be by the executives who agreed to make this movie.
— Rick Bentley, MCT Information Services
PG-13 1:42 1 star
Starring: Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore, Bella Thorne, Terry Crews, Joel McHale. (Crude and sexual humor)