Adam Sandler Keeps On Offending Everyone In The Ridiculous 6

Adam Sandler's movies tend to follow a blueprint: He's a lovable doofus who messes up his life and then fixes it all by the end of the film, while the hottest girl in the world falls in love with him seemingly against all logic or good advice. Along the way, a lot of sophomoric jokes get cracked by his former SNL castmates who are part of the Happy Madison family.

He shakes off that trope for The Ridiculous 6, in one way. In this film, he's a totally competent guy — the strong, silent type. For Sandler, that means talking like Christian Bale in The Dark Knight (or Clint Eastwood in every Western ever) to convey complexity and depth. It also means he's the straight man while his supporting cast and a burro make really bad jokes about farts, women's bodies, and every racial stereotype under the sun.

At its core, The Ridiculous 6 is, like most of Sandler's movies, an infantile fantasy. He hooks up with his five brothers, played by Rob Schneider, Jorge Garcia, Taylor Lautner, Terry Crews, and Luke Wilson, to go on a journey to save the father they never knew. Or, a journey to manhood. The problem with that is that their path to becoming men contains no fully developed female characters. Even Quentin Tarantino's forthcoming update on the Western genre, The Hateful Eight, manages to fit in a strong female with Jennifer Jason Leigh's character, Daisy Domergue.

In Sandler's world, women are reduced to one-note appearances. They are prostitutes, wives, and the memories of the brothers' mothers, who are only described through the eyes of their sons but never actually speak. We meet Sandler's wife, the dutiful Smoking Fox (Julia Jones), a Native American woman with a name that manages to be both racist and sexist. That's the theme for all the Native American women we meet, who get one-note lines of introduction. They include Screaming Eagle, Never Wears Bra (a woman in the tribe who desperately wants to do it with Sandler for no apparent reason), and Beaver Breath (a woman whom a rival gang finds unattractive). The objections of the Native American community to this movie were well documented while it was still in production.

It's not only Native Americans this film manages to skewer. Lautner plays a mentally impaired young man who's the butt of many jokes. Garcia plays a man with developmental disorders thanks to fetal alcohol syndrome. Schneider dons brown face paint to play a Mexican. Crews constantly makes jokes that he's half-black and no one can tell. That's Sandler's comedy M.O.: In a world where nothing is sacred, it's fine to make fun of everything, right? Nope. The humor here is not smart enough to be subversive, so it just feels irresponsible and offensive.

The story makes plenty of historical detours by well known comedians, including a 10-minute bit where John Turturro creates the game of baseball; one where Luke Wilson is President Lincoln's bodyguard and lets John Wilkes Booth (Chris Kattan) kill him; a running gag about the Left Eye gang led by Will Forte; and a plot line about a poker game that is only worth mentioning here because it features the film's lone female comedian, Whitney Cummings. She plays Jon Lovitz's wife and gets less screen time and jokes than Vanilla freaking Ice.

Ridiculous? We'd say so.


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