Saturday, January 13, 2007

Movie Review: Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo 2 Stars

In the grand tradition of films like The Waterboy, Lost & Found and Dirty Work comes Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, Rob Schneider’s attempt to “graduate” from the skits of Saturday Night Live to the dubious realm of pathetic leading man of comedy. In that respect, Schneider is Phi Beta Kappa (for those of you who own The Waterboy on DVD, that’s a good thing).

As Deuce Bigalow, Schneider plays a fish tank cleaner, which fits perfectly because the way he repels women--and society, for that matter--you would think he was covered in barnacles and fungus. Fortunately for Deuce, he lucks into a choice pond-skimming job which leads to an even choicer stint “fishsitting” for a high priced gigolo who is amazingly comfortable (despite token warnings) with an im-perfect stranger bumbling around his precious collection of antiques. As you might expect, it takes Deuce about 18 seconds to accidentally trash the entire place, the consequences of which plunge him into the less than glamorous world of “man-whoring” (as his “man-pimp” likes to call it).

Along the way Deuce has encounters with every abnormal woman Schneider and co-scripter Harris Goldberg think present the best opportunities for comedy. Just as Deuce hits his stride, however, he meets and falls in love with a beautiful girl who likes him too, presumably because his love for fish makes him nice. They bond during your standard romantic comedy montage, but they’re both keeping big secrets from each other that will lead to the kind of nasty break up that turns out to be nothing to shake a prosthetic leg at. Will Deuce get the gigolo’s place in order before it’s too late? Can Deuce find a way to make the woman of his dreams love him again? Will the supporting cast of freaks band together to help pull Deuce through? If you’ve seen a romantic comedy in the last twenty years, I’m sure you can make an educated guess.

If you were expecting more from Happy Madison Productions, Adam Sandler’s production company’s first movie, it’s your own fault. Such a setting, where the jokes are too juvenile to be offensive, is where comics like Sandler and Schneider thrive. For some reason, however, they repeatedly feel they must humor us with a formulaic romance that makes little sense and detracts from the reason we bought a ticket--the gags. Regardless, Schneider’s malleable face and fine comic delivery make the smarmy Deuce worth watching and Eddie Griffin supplies notable support as Schneider’s fast-talking “man-pimp” and liaison into the world of “man-whoring.”

For those of you who thought Big Daddy was a little too highbrow for an Adam Sandler movie, don’t despair. Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo has come to save the day and give you the toilet plunger humor you’ve been expecting. For anyone who may have been expecting more, may I remind you that you willingly bought a ticket to see a movie entitled Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo.

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