The Longest Yard

"Weak"

The Longest Yard Review


When Adam Sandler isn't interesting enough to hold yourattention in an Adam Sandler movie, something is certainly amiss. In "TheLongest Yard" -- an off-balance remake of Burt Reynolds' 1974 prison-footballcomedy -- the star's underwritten character loses all sense of personalityafter the opening scene, in which his washed-up, alcoholic loser, ex-NFLquarterback leads police on a drunken high-speed chase.

Thus imprisoned in a dusty desert lock-up where the abusive,steroid-pumped guards (all played by wrestlers or former pro football linemen)have their own pigskin league, Sandler is compelled by the nasty warden(James Cromwell) to coach a scabby team of inmates for his boys to beatup on in practice. But for some reason known only to the screenwriter,these practices never happen. Instead, the movie follows the standard BigGame plot, and Sandler (who doesn't have the body mass to be credible asa former football player) recruits and trains the biggest, meanest prisonershe can find, then leads them onto the field himself (with Reynolds' helpas another ex-NFL inmate) for a full-contact finale picked up by ESPN2for a novelty national broadcast.

Unfortunately, once he's in the hoosegow and sobered up,all the bite goes out of Sandler's QB and he is severely upstaged by thecast of crazies (Cloris Leachman is the warden's aged, sex-mad secretary,Tracey Morgan leads the transvestite cheerleading squad) and muscle-boundtoughs (Brian Bosworth, Michael Irvin, Bill Romanowski, Steve Austin, BillGoldberg, etc.). Most of these guys can barely act, but at least directorPeter Segal ("50First Dates") figures out how to use themfor laughs.

What Segal can't seem to do is get a handle on the movie'sbalance of comedy and drama, on one hand relying heavily on race-basedone-liners (ChrisRock plays the joint's resident wisecracker),while on the other trying for moments of poignancy that fall awkwardlyflat. Because "The Longest Yard" takes itself seriously at times,it's harder to forgive the occasional gigantic plot hole -- like the factthat the inmates seem to have access to any room they want in the penalcomplex, even getting into the guards' locker room and personnel files.

Once the climactic game begins, the movie rebounds brieflybecause unlike in more clich=E9-driven sports flicks, everybody here is playingdirty, and Sandler -- whose character had originally been kicked out ofthe NFL for point-shaving -- is faced with an ultimatum from the now-threatenedwarden: Either throw the game or get framed for a recent prison murder.But these scenes are undermined by such an overkill of editing (split-screens,zooms and varying camera speeds are used creatively but excessively) anda surfeit of play-by-play narration that it soon feels as if the playersare following the directions of ESPN's Chris Berman (in an extended cameo),instead of Berman just describing their action on the field.

Had "The Longest Yard" been either a little dumberor a little smarter, it might have overcome its underdeveloped game planand underwritten lead character. But Adam Sandler (also the film's producer)and Peter Segal fumbled the ball.



The Longest Yard

Facts and Figures

Run time: 113 mins

In Theaters: Friday 27th May 2005

Box Office USA: $158.0M

Box Office Worldwide: $190.3M

Budget: $82M

Distributed by: Paramount Pictures

Production compaines: Paramount Pictures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 31%
Fresh: 51 Rotten: 113

IMDB: 6.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Paul Crewe, as Caretaker, as Coach Nate Scarborough, as Deacon Moss, as Megget, as Battle, as Cheeseburger Eddy, as Switowski, as Brucie, Dalip Singh Rana as Turley, as Torres, Steve Reevis as Baby Face Bob, as Ms. Tucker, as Captain Knauer, Bill Romanowski as Guard Lambert, as Guard Engleheart, as Guard Dunham, Brian Bosworth as Guard Garner, as Guard Papajohn, Conrad Goode as Guard Webster, as Guard Malloy, as Warden Hazen, as Lynette, as Punky

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

The BFG Movie Review

The BFG Movie Review

For his adaptation of the Roald Dahl classic, Steven Spielberg reunited with screenwriter Melissa Mathison,...

Finding Dory Movie Review

Finding Dory Movie Review

It's been 13 years since the release of the Disney/Pixar hit Finding Nemo, and filmmaker...

Star Trek Beyond Movie Review

Star Trek Beyond Movie Review

This is where the Star Trek franchise officially shifts from thoughtful drama into thunderous action....

Ice Age: Collision Course Movie Review

Ice Age: Collision Course Movie Review

With its fifth feature-length adventure, this franchise continues its preposterous journey at full tilt. As...

Keanu Movie Review

Keanu Movie Review

An entertaining hybrid of satirical comedy and action thriller, this madcap adventure swerves wildly between...

Ghostbusters Movie Review

Ghostbusters Movie Review

It's been more than 30 years since the Ghostbusters first hit the big screen with...

Now You See Me 2 Movie Review

Now You See Me 2 Movie Review

While the original 2013 magical caper was a big hit, it's style-over-substance approach didn't exactly...

Advertisement
The Legend of Tarzan Movie Review

The Legend of Tarzan Movie Review

It's been nearly 30 years since the last live-action Tarzan movie, and yet it still...

Maggie's Plan Movie Review

Maggie's Plan Movie Review

A New York comedy with vivid characters and a contrived plot, this feels rather a...

Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie Movie Review

Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie Movie Review

Nearly 25 years after the sitcom debuted, Edina and Patsy arrive on the big screen...

Central Intelligence Movie Review

Central Intelligence Movie Review

After teaming up with Will Ferrell for Get Hard and Ice Cube for two Ride...

The Colony [Colonia] Movie Review

The Colony [Colonia] Movie Review

Based on a true story, this Chilean drama has a chilling edge to it that's...

Independence Day: Resurgence Movie Review

Independence Day: Resurgence Movie Review

Two decades is a long time to wait for a sequel, especially one starring much...

Elvis & Nixon Movie Review

Elvis & Nixon Movie Review

This movie is based on a real meeting between Elvis Presley and Richard Nixon in...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.