The Wedding Singer

on February 13, 1998 by Kim Williamson
   The best thing about "The Wedding Singer" is its timing. Unfortunately, that's not the comic timing of the usually engaging Adam Sandler, who here reveals his limited range as an actor; called on to replace some of his "Happy Gilmore" shtick with the emoting of a romantic lead, he does just that but in an unpersuasive on/off fashion. He's more light switch than character: Sometimes his wedding-singer Robbie is puppy-eyed with devotion for sweet local waitress Julia (Drew Barrymore); at other times, he's the obnoxious lout Sandler's movie fans, such as they are, appreciate.
   What is happy timing about "The Wedding Singer" is simply its release date, and this is the kind of movie that's especially marketable for Valentine's Day couples looking for both-gender fare. As such fare, "The Wedding Singer" disappoints in other ways; though she creates an appealing character, Barrymore provides no greater reason for Robbie to like her Julia than that she's a nice girl, underpowering audience desire for the two leads to end up together. Also, the film's simple-mindedness, as demonstrated by its black hat/white hat characterizations, makes this a movie about over-21 types more suitable for early teen audiences, although older demos might find the film's Reagan-era setting a mildly amusing look back at life in the '80s. Starring Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore and Christine Taylor. Directed by Frank Coraci. Written by Tim Herlihy. Produced by Robert Simonds and Jack Giarraputo. A New Line release. Romantic comedy. Rated PG-13 for sex-related material and language. Running time: 95 min
Tags: wedding singer, singer, music, entertainer, wedding, romance, crude humor, Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore, Billy Idol, Allen Covert, Christine Taylor, Frank Coraci, Tim Herlihy, Jack Giarraputo

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