Flashback Review: Happy Gilmore

In 1995, six years after making his film debut in “Going Overboard” labeled as a miscalculation, Adam Sandler starred in “Billy Madison.” At the time, critics hated it, but movie goers loved it. Overtime, it gained a cult following. As a fan of Mr. Sandler, it was pretty funny. After Adam got fired on “SNL” for unknown reasons, he made another comedy as a hockey player turned golfer who must pay off his grandmother’s debts to the IRS. What I’m referring to is the plot from “Happy Gilmore.”

Happy Gilmore was released in 1996. (same year Matilda came out) Unlike Billy Madison, this one earned mixed to positive reviews from critics and movie goers alike. Plus, it made enough cash at the box office. Happy Gilmore also gained a cult following. Adam’s most recent movie is a sports drama called, “Hustle.” Streaming exclusively on Netflix. His next projects are “Murder Mystery 2,” “Spaceman” & “You Are So Not Invited to My Bat Mitzvah.” To prepare for his upcoming films, I wanna share my thoughts on the classic sports comedy.

It doesn’t matter if SPOILERS are listed. We’ve all seen Adam’s early work countless times every time we say a quote or share a clip via social media.

Victory & Defeat Elements

Victory: Adam Sandler did a hilarious job for his performance as the titular character. He also wrote the script with his writing partner, Tim Herlihy.

Other Cast Members such as Adam’s good friend Allen Covert, Carl Weathers, Julie Bowen, Christopher McDonald, Kevin Nealon, & Ben Stiller all did a decent job for their respective performances.

Fun Fact: Adam & Ben later collaborated in the Netflix dramedy, “The Meyerowitz Stories.”

Robert Smigel (Triumph the Insult Comic Dog) appears as an IRS agent. He’s also good friends with Adam. They often work together.

Cinematography never had any technical issues.

Humor contains a lot of memorable quotes, slapstick and Adam’s schtick of jokes involving animals, old people, yelling, his love for a character’s favorite food. Back when his materiel didn’t copy and paste most of his films.

The best scene is arguably Happy’s fight with Bob Barker. There’s a legit reason why took the MTV Movie Award for “Best Fight.” To put the icing on the cake, the best line is… “The price is wrong… (fill in the blank) Another good fight scene is Happy beating up an alligator.

Besides the quote mentioned above, my other favorite line is “Are you too good for your home?”

Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Tuesday’s Gone” is played during the Opening and End Credits. The song was also used in “Daze and Confused,” “Boys Don’t Cry” & “Guitar Hero: Metallica.”

Despite Chubbs’ death, he shows up in a cameo appearance in “Little Nicky.” Cue his catchphrase… “It’s all in the hips.”

The late Richard Kiel (Jaws from James Bond) appears when he and a crowd chase Shooter for stealing Happy’s award. I guess Adam is a James Bond fan.

During Happy & Shooter’s final golf match, Gary Glitter’s “Rock and Roll Part 2” is played in the background. The song was also used in “Reality Bites,” “Sudden Death,” “Small Soldiers,” “The Replacements,” “Meet the Fockers” and last but not least, “Joker.”

Defeat: Product Placement is everywhere. Most notably, Subway I’ll let this con slide, because many sports events sponsor a brand. Roger Ebert didn’t get the point why Sponsorship is plastered all over the place. In a non-sports film, I have to subtract a point down. Why can’t Adam be the next Subway spokesperson? He’s much nicer than that disgusting monster, Jared Fogle.

The Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!

Happy Gilmore is one of Adam Sandler’s best films alongside Billy Madison, “The Wedding Singer,” “The Waterboy,” “Punch-Drunk-Love,” “Eight Crazy Love,” (a guilty pleasure of mine) “Reign Over Me,” “Uncut Gems” and the “Hotel Transylvania” series.

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