Mr. Deeds

Bomb Rating: 

Ryder's comic timing is so unholy awful that, in a way, she actually steals the show.

Is it surprising to anyone that after a film starring Adam Sandler and Winona Ryder, I left feeling colossally ripped off? Hey, we all know Sandler is an idiot with zero acting skill, but I thought Ryder had enough talent to at least take a swipe at this fluffy role. She moved through the whole film like she was trying to scurry out a door without being seen. Thanks to her, there was much missing from "Mr. Deeds."

Thankfully, I relished a moment of joy after this movie, one that I know Ryder would appreciate: The second I stepped out of the theater, I remembered I hadn't paid a dime to see it. Having some prescription medicine of my own to dull the pain of watching the thing would have made the experience perfect. The irony of all this, of course, is that with the combined appeal of Sandler and Ryder, "Mr. Deeds" should have easily been in the bag.

Perhaps I'm being unduly harsh. Ryder's comic timing is so unholy awful that, in a way, she actually steals the show. Facial tics and bipolar moments aside, her role as the reporter trying to get a story on the man who's inherited 40 billion dollars, only to fall in love with him, is idiotic to begin with. This fits right into Sandler's whole schtick. Now in combination with his last two films, "Big Daddy" and "Little Nicky," Sandler finds his career spiraling down the toilet faster than Ryder's plausibility. Some of the film's jokes might have been funny had they actually had something to do with the story or the character, but Sandler's doper frat buddies apparently just came up with the stupidest things they could think of and jammed them into the film whether they fit or not. And Sandler's contempt for small-town America is about as dull as his intellect.

If only Sandler could have sent Ryder to pilfer a decent script, some acting talent, and a clue, "Mr. Deeds" might have been something that didn't make the audience feel like Mongoloids were taking over the world.

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