Big Daddy (1999) Poster

(1999)

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7/10
generally likable comedy
Buddy-5118 August 1999
It's hard not to like "Big Daddy", though diehard fans of Adam Sandler may well cringe at this further step in the sentimentalization of the comic actor. For although this film has raised the hackles of a number of overly sensitive worrywarts for its seeming endorsement of permissive parenting, the film is, in reality, far more soft-hearted than hard-edged. Actually, this seems to be, probably, the wisest direction for Sandler to go in at the moment because, as an actor, he conveys an aura of genuine likability that fits well with his Average Joe persona. "Big Daddy" might have been a better film if it had not given in so easily to sentimentality and predictable emotional uplift, but Sandler's deadpan portrayal of an immature adult forced to grow up into responsibility-laden fatherhood makes the film relatively enjoyable.

Sandler portrays a 30-something loser living in South Manhattan, who has been milking a minor foot injury to the tune of a $200,000 court settlement and whose life, consequently, consists of miniscule employment, a general lack of direction, and a girlfriend who's ready to move on to an older man with a "5-year plan". When a little boy suddenly shows up on his doorstep (the hitherto unknown son of a friend of his), Sandler decides to temporarily take him under his wing in the hopes of winning his girlfriend back. Thus, a man with almost no resources of adult maturity attempts to instill skewed life lessons into a willing, highly impressionable young mind. This leads to Sandler's teaching the boy to indulge in predictable, but surprisingly timid, antisocial behavior such as urinating on public buildings, staying up late, tripping unsuspecting rollerbladers etc. The film is not always at its peak of creative freshness at such times, but Sandler's lowkey cynicism provides some humor.

As Sandler grows to care for his tot and the inevitable forces array themselves against him to take the child away, the film veers off in the direction of sappiness and maudlin tearjerking. One may be moved at times, but one also craves the satirical sharpness and bite that a more courageous screenplay might have provided.

The movie does display an enlightened view of gays (though Hollywood has yet to get past the point where gay characters can do more than merely twinkle at each other), but it loses points for its rather nasty tone towards old people. Still, any film designed to send Dr. Laura into spasms of psychoanalytical outrage should be respected and honored.

Overall, "Big Daddy" is a movie that, if it had taken more audacious pathways, might have been a firstrate comedy. As it is, it provides numerous chuckles and a cuddly warm feeling - and that, given the state of much of big screen comedy these days, is about all we dare allow ourselves to expect.
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7/10
Adam Sandler in top form!
Brogan25 June 1999
While all of the somphoric pre-teens will be giggling silly at the childish potty jokes shown in AUSTIN POWERS 2, the real adults will be laughing their heads off in a much funnier film called BIG DADDY. This is Sandler's sixth starring role feature, and it seems that the sixth time is a splending charm. This is Sandler's best work yet! Now in case you are wondering, I enjoyed both HAPPY GILMORE, and THE WEDDING SINGER. But there's something charming and wonderful on why I enjoyed BIG DADDY more. Perhaps it's seeing a over-grown kid taking care of a little boy. Or it's Sandler mixing his in your face attitude that he gave in HAPPY GILMORE with his soft-spot attiude from THE WEDDING SINGER. Whatever it is, it works, and it works very well! The simple plot of BIG DADDY is a 5 year old child is left on the doorstep of Sandler's apartment. It turns out to be the child of his roommate (Jon Stewart), who's on his way to China for a legal case. So what is Sandler to do, but to give him to the child protective service. But it's a holiday, and they are closed, so Sandler keeps him for a day, then another day, and... well you get the picture. But the plot doesn't matter much with this film, it's the laughs, and you do get plenty of those. But you also get a wonderful supporting cast. There's a good support from Jon Stewart, the always wonderful and beautiful Joey Lauren Adams, Leslie Mann, and Kristy Swanson (the original Buffy the Vampire Slayer). And what's a Sandler movie like if you don't have his usual character actor friends in small comic roles; Rob Schrieder, Steve Buscemi, Josh Mostel, Allen Covert (the caddy from HAPPY GILMORE who was also the limo driver friend in THE WEDDING SINGER), and Jonathan Loughran (the lazy-eyed football player in THE WATERBOY). There's even a funny cameo role by director Dennis Dugan, as the man who refuses to answer the door on Halloween, while Sandler is taking his adopted son trick or treating. This film was a lot more funnier that THE WATERBOY, it was also funnier than THE WEDDING SINGER and HAPPY GILMORE. It was believe it or not, more touching. You can understand why Sandler doesn't want to let this boy go, since he reminds him so much of himself. And Sandler sees that being a father figure isn't only fun, but it redeems himself from the lost of his girlfriend. I have to give both Sandler and director Dennis Dugan (the same director of HAPPY GILMORE) a round of applause. They teamed up for a comedy that is not only successful, but will make A LOT of money. Sandler and Dugan are the best comedian/director team since the late John Belushi and John Landis. I'm just hoping that they will continue to do films together in the futrue. Until then, take your date, your friends, or heck just go alone and enjoy one of the funniest comedies (next to ANALYZE THIS, ELECTION, and RUSHMORE) of this year. This is a wonderful treat! ****1/2 (out of five)
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6/10
Formula, silly, and actually funny!
Shiva-1118 June 1999
Big Daddy- Sonny Koufax (Adam Sandler) is the paragon of irresponsibility - he has no job, no manners, and no clue. Although Sonny has somehow managed to get a girlfriend, she is tired of his aimless ways, and gives him an ultimatum - do something with your life or I leave. Fate steps in with a ready-made 'solution': Sonny will raise the little boy who was dropped off at the apartment with a note proclaiming his roommate (Jon Stewart) the father, his girlfriend will realize his newfound responsibility, and all will be well.

Plausibility this movie doesn't have. But we are talking about Adam Sandler, the man who has given us such brainteasers as Happy Gilmore, and Billy Madison. Sandler's frat-boy humor - childish and, scatalogical - has however, drawn a huge following as evidenced by The Waterboy's huge box office, (a movie that I myself enjoyed and will surely be pilloried for).

I expected one thing from this movie - a good laugh. And it delivered. The obligatory tearjerker scenes were painful, but thankfully few and far between. If you are in the mood for some humor-light on cheap Tuesday, give this movie a chance.
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8/10
Sandler's funniest!
baumer28 June 1999
Some movies are made for us to ponder questions of morality and ethics. Some are made for us to question reality. Some are made for us to find ourselves.

This movie is not one of them.

This movie was made for one reason and that is to make us laugh. And it does that very well.

Sandler plays an incredibly irresponsible derelict that has no real job or ambition in life. He gets a kid left on is doorstep and he is forced to care for him. The story needn't be described any more than that, we all know what happens. But it is what this movie does to our senses that makes it worth while. In short, it makes us laugh hysterically. This film is a whirlwind of jokes and hilarity and when it stops to let you catch your breath it still entertains you. I admire films like this. They aren't meant to be Instinct or The Siege ( two films that I absolutely love ) but all it aspires to do is entertain you; take you away from life for 90 minutes. And let's face it. Sitting in a cool theater with a bag of M&M's, a cold Coke and a funny movie is a perfect way to spend a lazy summer afternoon.

This is a great movie and it will make you laugh. That's all it is, nothing more, nothing less. And we should be thankful for that.
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6/10
Adam Sandler vehicle - nuff said
Shiva-1115 June 1999
Big Daddy- Sonny Koufax (Adam Sandler) is the irresponsible guy - he has no manners, and no clue. Although Sonny has somehow managed to get a girlfriend, she is tired of his aimless ways, and gives him an ultimatum - do something with your life or I leave. Fate steps in with a ready-made 'solution': Sonny will raise the little boy who was dropped off at the apartment with a note proclaiming his roommate (Jon Stewart) the father, his girlfriend will realize his newfound responsibility, and all will be well. Plausibility this movie doesn't have. But we are talking about Adam Sandler, the man who has given us such brainteasers as Happy Gilmore, and Billy Madison. Sandler's frat-boy humor - childish and, scatological - has however, drawn a huge following as evidenced by The Waterboy's huge box office, (a movie that I myself enjoyed and will surely be pilloried for). I expected one thing from this movie - a good laugh. And it delivered. The obligatory tearjerker scenes were painful, but thankfully few and far between. If you are in the mood for some humor-light on cheap Tuesday, give this movie a chance.
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8/10
Funny and surprisingly touching.
Brad K.5 July 1999
Adam Sandler (The Waterboy, The Wedding Singer) has pulled off another hit with Big Daddy. Sandler stars as a lazy law-school graduate who won't take the bar exam. One day when his roommate goes on a business trip to China a child arrives at the day with a note claiming to be his roommate's son. Sandler takes the kid for a day and after having a good time decides to keep him to impress his girlfriend who doesn't think he's trying to grow up. His girlfriend dumps him and he's stuck with the kid. Not surprisingly Sandler isn't a good father, but soon he bonds with the kid and he learns how to be a good father. This might sound like a cheesy feel-good film, but with Sandler the humor is kind of low-brow, but often hilarious. The film does also offer a few touching scenes between Sandler and the kid. Sandler's performance was very funny, but reminded me a little of Jim Carrey's performance in Liar Liar. Liar Liar if you have seen it was a regular Carrey comedy, but offered a couple of serious scenes which Carrey pulled off well. Carrey then went on to do The Truman Show and win a Golden Globe. Sandler also has a couple of serious scenes which he nails well. I'm not suggesting that Sandler is going to become a great actor (like Carrey seems headed for) but he may have the skill to do it if he wants. Leslie Mann (George of the Jungle, The Cable Guy) and Joey Lauren Adams (Chasing Amy, A Cool Dry Place) are both good as sisters. Jon Stewart (The Faculty, Playing by Heart) is solid as Sandler's roommate. Twins Cole and Dylan Sprouse are convincing as the kid. Finally, two favorites of mine have very funny supporting roles. Steve Buscemi (Reservoir Dogs, Armageddon) is good as a homeless friend of Sandler's. And Rob Schneider (Judge Dredd, Knock Off) is hilarious as an immigrant delivery man who is good friends with Sandler. Highly Recommended.
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7/10
A rather funny movie featuring Sandler.
Aaron137517 July 2007
I am not a Sandler fan in the least, in fact for the most part I do not enjoy his movies. Still, this one was a rather funny little comedy even if it did have a rather unbelievable premise. Guy loses girl, guy tries to get girl back by taking in a kid who may or may not be a friend of his kid. So aside from that you have your funny scenes of Adam trying to raise a small boy to the best of his ability while also getting the attention of a new female in his life. Granted some of the jokes were just lame such as Sandler dressing up as the boy's favorite toy, but for the most part the jokes were hits. It did tend to get a bit sentimental towards the end, but not as bad as other movies of this type tend to get. Jon Stewart is in this one as is Sandler buddies Rob Snider. Steve Bushemi is also in it, but his appearance in the movie is rather stupid. So for a rather good comedy that isn't really great, but not unbearable like many Sandler comedies can get try this one on for size.
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10/10
Stop your bitching people. Admit it people, it was good.
pseudodeep29 December 1999
I was highly suprised to see such negative things about this movie. To think, that people can have so much hatred for a MOVIE! get over it people.

Personally, I loved this movie. I liked it better than Waterboy and Happy Gilmore (hell, I haven't even seen HG). This was an excellent movie, and it was funny. I don't really like Sandler's usual immature frat-boy humor, but in this movie, it was too sweet. Julian, the little boy, was adorable, how can you not love his little lisp?

ANd oh my god, they cussed a few times. So what? Yeah, there was sexual remarks, big deal. This is almost 2000, get used to it.

The ending was brutally sad, he couldn't keep the kid. But if he did it would be unrealistic. But Kevin Gerrity (played by the super-yummy Jon Stewart ;P ) did get his son back, and that was expected.

9/10

By the way, who was it who said Sonny was homeless? I oughta smack you for that. Idiot. If your going to make us suffer through your criticism, at least watch the movie.
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5/10
Corny and far-fetched
Andreas_N23 November 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Okay, I watched this movie and thought it had some good sequences, but then again, it was just corny. Like at the very end at the court hearing when everyone grabbed their cell phones and called their dads while sobbing - that's just utter crap. Apart from that I don't like Adam Sandler, which I concede is a personal bias. Nonetheless it HAD some witty sequences, although most of them did not seem genuine and are unlikely to occur in reality. I mean the basic approach was generally fairly good, but some scenes are simply too far-fetched. There are much more substantial movies out, so we definitely needn't praise this one too high. It would have been much better if the storyline had a stronger emphasis on the interpersonal burdens and struggles and less on the comedy aspect. Here again Adam Sandler was just the wrong actor to aim at such a transformation.
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More Adam Sandler Foolishness
soranno29 October 2002
Casting five year old twin boys as Adam Sandler's costars in this 1999 Columbia Pictures release was a very good idea. After all, Sandler's usual man-child character had to have somebody that he could relate to. Sandler portrays Sonny Koufax, a man who just might be the pure epitome of somebody who's not responsible. However, if that theory wasn't tested then there would be no film. In an effort to possibly win back his girlfriend (Kristy Swanson) who has left him because of his being irresponsible and has since taken up with another man, he offers to be a guardian for his traveling roommate's (Jon Stewart) son, Julian (portrayed by twins Cole and Dylan Sprouse). Agreeing to assume full responsibility for a child makes Sonny think that Swanson just might change her mind about leaving him. It doesn't happen and now child services won't let him return Julian. Sonny learns to grin and bear the situation by attempting to bond with Julian and in so doing, he gradually begins to feel more like an actual responsible father figure. Of course things get complicated when Stewart eventually returns home and a custody battle begins (Julian has grown attached to Sonny by this time). Even this dramatic seeming scene evolves into more adolescent comedy. Sandler's fans should enjoy this film but since I was never especially a fan of Sandler, I consider it to be just another crumbled up piece of paper in the sorry recent film comedy wastebasket.
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1/10
Humor aimed at Low IQs
Evan-3515 January 2000
Boy, did this movie suck. Even though it's only 90 minutes, it felt like it lasted 4 hours. Happy Gilmore was OK, but Sandler's other works have really blown. One reason i didn't like it is that Sandler's character is a jerk. He yells like a moron in a McDonald's, harasses a man (the film's director) in his apartment, spoils the kid, and causes bodily harm to skaters.

And it wasn't funny. We're supposed to laugh just because he and the kid p**s on the side of a building. bodily functions are not funny. They were when I was a little kid, but I've grown out of that. Anyway, that little kid was pretty annoying ("Pweese pway da tape"), and far from being cute. The majority of today's comedies seem to be aimed at immature people with low IQs whole will laugh at anything. I miss edgy, satirical, intelligent comedies like Dr. Strangelove. Watching Big Daddy was like being tied to a pole and beaten with a wet sock. I guess other people like that experience.
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1/10
A Profanity-Laced, Urine-Soaked Wasteland
Criz4 July 1999
"Big Daddy" has the misfortune of premiering in 1999, when the field for Most Pathetic Film of the Year is loaded with flicks like "Idle Hands" and the runaway winner so far, "Baby Geniuses". But give Adam Sandler credit: He took a decent budget, backing from a historic studio and a couple of well-respected co-stars and managed to come up with the most disgusting, stupid and unwatchable piece of cinematic garbage this summer.

"Big Daddy" is a profanity-laced, bodily-fluid-soaked wasteland of a film with no redeeming value whatsoever. Instead of thoughtful, amusing or touching scenes and dialogue, the viewer is treated to an endless display of urine and vomit cascading forth from the confused little lad at the centre of the proceedings. Basically, this film is a ruder "There's Something About Mary", only this time the butt of jokes is five years old. There's something more than a little disturbing about masses of adults and teenagers paying $8.50 to laugh at a little boy vomiting.

The only reason this film got made, of course, is because it serves a higher purpose as 90 minute recruiting video for Hooters restaurants. The Hooter Girl and "big bust" jokes are funny for the first five minutes, but quickly grow tiresome as Sandler uses them over and over.

Sadly wasted in this film are the significant talents of Rob Schneider and Steve Buscemi, both of whom perform admirably in minor roles. Unfortunately, the two are onscreen far too briefly to provide any sort of counterweight to the sorry mess created by Sandler and co-stars Joey Lauren Adams and Leslie Mann. Adams, who possesses a voice reminiscent of a hysterical toddler, tries desperately to be lovable, but falls far short. Mann's Corrine--whom we are supposed to believe worked her way through medical school as a Hooter Girl--provided the greatest levity of the evening. Her character is far too malicious to have ever succeeded as a waitress, and a Hooters job at that? I've seen a bigger bustline on a Bulgarian gymnast.

Whatever creativity and humanity Adam Sandler had in films like "The Wedding Singer" has been completely lost. With "Big Daddy", he has shown he is completely out of ideas.
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1/10
Absolutely awful
durot17 April 2002
I wasn't sure what was worse -- the muscle cramps that accompanied cringing at the horrible sentiment scenes, or the strain that resulted from rolling my eyes so often at the supposed humor.

The movie starts out bad enough, when slothful Sandler seems to have absolutely no motivation for doing something with his life, yet he can rattle of a dazzling defense of a complex court case that has the lawyers scratching their heads. I almost turned the movie off at that point because I figured it wouldn't get any better. But, being a fan of Adam Sandler movies, I thought I'd forgive him that one and see what else he had in store.

Unfortunately, there wasn't much. The plot moves forward with him deciding that he can resolve his maturity issues by adopting a child. The utter implausibility of this is maddening. But the kid comes off pretty cute, so I settle in again.

The kid soon becomes as annoying as Sandler in this movie. Suffice it to say that Sandler spends the movie showing the audience what a big star he is, degrading women at every possible step of the way, spouting his customary crude humor in shallow, stupid remarks, and basically maintains a macho attitude because, being Adam Sandler, he can get away with it.

Fortunately, it blows up in his face. Sandler's characters are usually strange, but they have some redeeming qualities that generally make for a fun movie. Not this time. In this film, he is apparently suffering indigestion from being too full of himself, and it shows. Hopefully, he will get over that and continue the progression in quality that his movies showed up through The Wedding Singer.
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4/10
A Weak Movie with a Big Heart
jerrythecow17 March 2006
Warning: Spoilers
The whole premise in Big Daddy is unlikely. A lazy bum finds a kid delivered to his doorstep and in order to impress his girlfriend, decides to take care of him until a better home can be found. He then goes on to teach him everything he knows about life. Which amounts to about...nothing.

There were a few chuckles, but it wasn't that funny of a movie. Wow. A kid wet his bed. Funny. Wait, no it's not.

Adam Sandler's performance was surprisingly rather weak, as were almost all of the actors and actresses involved.

And the ending was one of the worst endings I have ever seen! Just because all these people say that he loves the kid is no reason to give this guy, who doesn't have a steady job, who is not married, and has friends who are all other bums.

All in all, a good concept
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7/10
The Daily Show with Adam Sandler
lee_eisenberg3 June 2006
For the most part, "Big Daddy" is the average Adam Sandler movie, with him as slacker messing with the status quo. But this one certainly does have some intelligence to it. Portraying Sandler adopting a boy (twins Cole and Dylan Sprouse), the movie certainly gives adoption a good name, even if it uses complete silliness to do so. It's mostly interesting how the movie shows that he has to mature more in the process of raising this boy.

One noticeable thing is the presence of Jon Stewart (I believe that this was before he started hosting "The Daily Show"). Also appearing are Adam Sandler regulars Josh Mostel, Allen Covert, Rob Schneider and Steve Buscemi, plus Joey Lauren Adams as Sandler's hubby. A really enjoyable movie.
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6/10
I actually enjoyed it more than I thought I would
jimbo-53-1865119 December 2015
Sonny Koufax (Adam Sandler) is an unemployed layabout who claims that he is unable to work due to an accident he had involving a cab from 2 years ago. Sonny is a self-absorbed individual who generally thinks of no-one but himself much to the annoyance of his girlfriend. However, when a 5 year old boy named Julian (Cole Sprouse) ends up on his doorstep, Sonny claims to have adopted Julian in order to try and win back his girlfriend and prove himself worthy of her affections. Whilst Julian is in Sonny's care, Sonny does some growing up himself in the midst of some rather questionable antics as a caretaker parent.

The marketing for this film was always questionable; the film poster shows Sandler and the boy standing in front of a door and urinating against it. In this respect it does itself no real favours as there may be many people that decide not to watch it because it looks like it's going to be crude and juvenile from the poster. In fairness this isn't completely inaccurate as there are some aspects of the film that are a bit juvenile and crude, but the actual bulk of the film is quite charming and sweet and fairly enjoyable and I'm just puzzled as to why a fairly sweet-natured film was marketed so poorly. Anyway I digress...

Sandler's comedy films have sometimes proved problematic because some of the characters he has portrayed have been unlikeable or unsympathetic. In Big Daddy though, as things progress it becomes fairly obvious that Sonny's actually an OK person that just needed a bit of a kick up the backside. Looking after Julian gave Sonny a purpose in life and as mentioned it gave him the kick up the backside that he'd needed for the last 2 years. The chemistry between Julian and Sonny was also really good and the two of them share both funny moments and tender moments - I thought that Sonny telling Julian that wearing sunglasses meant nobody could see him was a funny idea and quite sweet as well.

There are some weaknesses to this film; firstly a lot of the acting here is rather mediocre (although Steve Buscemi was good fun in the limited screen time that he was given). The film was also a little too light on laughs for my liking - although the warmth and charm of the picture compensate slightly for the slight lack of humour. The film also gets very soppy towards the end and I also found some of the character shifts to be a bit dubious. The script offers few surprises and is fairly predictable, but I always say it doesn't matter if you know outcome B at point A as long as you generally enjoy everything in between and that pretty much sums up my feelings about this film. It's hardly Oscar-worthy, but it has some funny moments, it has some charm, and it surprised me by being better than I expected it to be.
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10/10
Vintage Sandler!
powermandan9 February 2015
Warning: Spoilers
Big Daddy was made around the time that Adam Sandler was evolving. Having just finished The Waterboy and The Wedding Singer, Sandler is back to his old self. Luckily, his material was new and fresh, so he was not very hated.

The character of Sonny Kofax early on in the film is pretty much Adam Sandler playing Adam Sandler. He is a 32-year-old law school grad who works one day a week as a toll-booth ticket- taker. The rest of the time, he lazes out buying worthless junk and lives off a successful lawsuit filed two years earlier. This first little bit is typical Sandler. But there's no fart jokes which make it more of a cute kind of funny. When his roommate (Stewart) is out of town, a child named Julian (Sprouse) drops by with a note claiming to be his. He lies to social services saying he is his roommate and adopts him, hoping it will show responsibility and maturity. When his girlfriend (Swanson) dumps him for a much older man, Sonny tries to take the kid back. When he grows to love him, he tries to fight to keep him.

So we get regular Sandler progressing to a more mature version of himself. Yes, there is silly toilet humour, but nothing that crosses the line of stupid and unfunny. When he adopts Julian, it is funny to see someone irresponsible like Adam Sandler caring for a 5-year-old. He has no idea what to do. This day in age, young parents are the norm. Teens always get pregnant. Since they are still kids themselves and not fully mature, they have tough times raising their own. Big Daddy kind of reflects that: he is immature and adopts a child. But the responsibility that he takes on makes him wake up and smell the coffee. He must discipline him as well as give him freedom. Of course it is hard to get the hang of, but that is all part of parenthood and Adam Sandler adds humour to that in all the right spots. Because he got a dose of reality, his love life strengthens when he falls for Layla Maloney (Adams) and finally becomes a successful lawyer by the end.

Big Daddy offers us truly funny and clever Adam Sandler humour, along with a beautiful glimpse at fatherhood.
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7/10
Sandler has another talent, but throws it away
StevePulaski30 May 2012
Upon finishing Big Daddy I had a feeling of optimism and disappointment at the same time. This is one of the few perfect examples showing that Adam Sandler can effectively make a drama film, with some mild comedy, and create a relatively passable picture, but he opts out for cruder, more one-dimensional projects that provide little wit. This among 50 First Dates, Click, and Funny People can be viewed as the delightfully surprising Sandler pictures. The rest you can feel free to discard.

I'm too amazed at how tolerable some of the pictures where Sandler is out of the frame are. By now, most are aware of the Happy Madison regulars; Sandler, Rob Schneider, David Spade, Allen Covert, Peter Dante, Kevin Nealon, and newcomers Kevin James and Nick Swardson. I found Happy Madison's Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star and Grandma's Boy to be entertaining works, if marginally forgettable, but also observed how when Sandler is working as producer, the end result is more often than not better. We'll see if that formula continues to thrive. I have quite a few more Happy Madison pictures to dig through.

Here, Sandler is actually rather capable playing the doughy man-child Sonny, who is 32, works one day a week at a toll-booth, and somehow still managed to snag the beautiful girlfriend. He manages to remain in stable conditions living off restitution payments from a petty vehicle accident. While Sonny's recently engaged roommate Kevin, played by, yes that, Jon Stewart, is off on business in China, Sonny is greeted with a five year old named Julian (the Sprouse twins) on his doorstep, and a written note claims that Julian came from a night of partying on Kevin's part. Unable to return home, Kevin puts Sonny under the care of Julian, and Sonny winds up lying to Social Services saying he is Kevin.

So, when Sandler's character is the parent, what do you think will happen? Insubordination? Mischief? Rambunctiousness and chaos galore? Well, you're right, but all in a muted form. What Sonny winds up doing with the kid is rather tame and not expected from the usual Sandler schtick. There's even a hint of nice sentimentality, that comes in the form of pleasantness rather than conventional schmaltz. He allows the kid to utilize options rather than orders to hopefully round him out to be a better person, rather than evolve into a miserable degenerate late on in life. Ultimately, the focus is more on the slapstick and the crudeness of the picture, and we go from some marginally sentimental scenes to jokes about Sonny's relationship with his gay friends (Covert and Dante) very quickly. But even then, the film never truly becomes dismal or reprehensible.

There's even a love story, with the beautiful Joey Lauren Adams playing Layla, Kevin's fiancée's sister. She keeps the story from truly going too far into the sea of despair, and is even involved in some of the film's best scenes. The one I immediately think of is the bedtime story.

What ultimately stops Big Daddy dead in its tracks is formula, which truly isn't taken in a way sharp enough to wholeheartedly recommend. Its mixture of slapstick and charm is impressive, the performances are nice, and the delivery is rarely rocky, but at times, the film becomes a tad too contrived, incorporating textbook pieces like the inevitable courtroom scene at the end and the "cute kid says naughty thing" cliché. For Sandler, it's a step up, and he may want to consider more of the impressively sassy kids films with a nice heart.

Starring: Adam Sandler, Cole Sprouse, Dylan Sprouse, Joey Lauren Adams, Jon Stewart, Rob Schneider, Leslie Mann, and Steve Buscemi. Directed by: Dennis Dugan.
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8/10
Sandler is funny!
g-bodyl8 December 2007
Warning: Spoilers
This was the first Adam Sandler movie I saw. I must say that I was impressed. Sandler plays Sonny who is just a cheap, low-life guy who works at a tollbooth and he has family issues. Then one day, a 5-year-old kid was dumped on his doorstep. He decides to take care of the kid even when there is legal trouble involving him and the kid. I thought that Dennis Dugan did a good job as directing. The chemistry between the actors was OK, but it works. There were fine performances by the Sprouse twins, Rob Schneider, and Jon Stewart. I also liked the music of this film. I enjoyed listening to the two versions of "Sweet Child O' Mine" by Sheryl Crow and Guns'N'Roses. Last of all, the film was pretty funny. This is a nice fit for your movie collection! I rate this movie a 8/10.
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1/10
How can Sandler keep getting work?
Hotbody27 June 1999
Adam Sandler, once again he proves that you cannot go broke underestimating the taste of the US public. There must be hypnosis used to draw people to his movies. What I saw was entirely forgettable. Aside from someone slapping their kid around because they wouldn't stop talking (in the audience), there was nothing of mention in the movie. Adam Sandler makes Pauly Shore sound entertaining. If you liked 'Water Boy,' 'Biodome,' or 'Manos, Hands of Fate' you might be able to enjoy this film...
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The Goof
tedg25 March 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Spoilers herein.

Its always been an American film staple to have a simpleminded but purehearted hero. Chaplin invented the image. He would be appalled at how the notion has been

appropriated by the US Republican party. An excellent character is all that matters, especially compared to the archetypical Democrat played by the worrywart "responsible" father: the real Big Daddy.

In this case, it is more than just the image that has been stolen, on which Sandler has built a career. Here we have a whole movie stolen, down to the fawning eyes of the kid. Wouldn't be much of a crime if they worked harder at it. But it is put together in such a slapdash way that it sputters all over the place.

Ted's evaluation: 1 of 3 -- you can find something better to do with this part of your life.
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4/10
Another Disappointing Movie From Sandler
Theo Robertson3 May 2005
It's amazing to think that at the turn of the century Adam Sandler was hyped as being on the brink of mega stardom . Even more amazingly he was at one point the world's highest paid movie star ! No doubt his loyal fans ( All three of them ) can reconcile themselves with being first in line to see his next blockbuster performance since no one in 2005 queues to see a Sandler movie , especially if it's released direct to video

It's easy to see where Sandler went wrong . BIG DADDY has Sandler play a bit of a loser just like every other movie that has " Starring Adam Sandler " in the credits or should that be " Starring Adam Sandler because Ben Stiller turned the role down " ? . Here his girlfriend dumps him and he finds out his ex wife has died and so his infant son who he's not seen is thrust on his doorstep , but if you're expecting a heart warming tale similar to THE KID you're going to be disappointed since it's " Starring Adam Sandler " so the story takes a turn for the worse as we're treated to some very infantile humour

I do feel slightly guilty for writing an overly honest review of BIG DADDY and apologies too if it's rather brief but Adam Sandler is a comedy actor I've never warmed too . I find his performances very repetitive and formulaic and this movie is no different . I will say that it's not helped by he fact that I re-watched MEET THE PARENTS a comedy that improves on multiple re-viewings and stars Ben Stiller a very similar but superior comedy actor to Mr Sandler
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1/10
Third grade humor...
dancing_yogini9 June 2006
Absolutely unbelievable fantasy and utterly sophomoric…

A personality who's gone through law school, unless they have been on meth for a long time, would not "teach" such anti-social and potentially punishable behavior. Writers should have made him a writer, an architect or even a doctor... but a lawyer? Please! The stick would not be on the ground it'd been on a part of their body.

Don't even think that a lawyer would have the capacity or audacity to respect the child's choices and would have been mortified by some of the outfits.

A lot of writing license and not poetic.

Really hard to swallow syrup in the court room with his abusive dad...

Teens are not too far from the third grade so they might enjoy yet another Sandler waste of time and money.
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1/10
one of the worst movies ever
Niv-126 April 2001
Big Daddy is clearly and with out a doubt one of the worst movies ever made. From the terrible, repulsive, acting, to the soggy story, to the bad acting, an awful film. Adam Sandler gives one of the worst performances in the history of film. What was he doing in this movie? Did he want to be in it? It doesn't appear so as his performance has no life whatsoever. His scenes are painful to watch and he's painfully not funny. The whole movie is. Jon Stewart, and Rob Schneider are also horrendous. The women in this movie are totally and completely wasted. The story is so far-fetched and implausible it would be dumb to describe it. One of the worst films ever made. A far to generous ONE is what I had to rate this piece of blank.
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2/10
cheap laughs
rebeljenn13 November 2005
Big Daddy is another cheap and ridiculous film starring Adam Sandler. (I don't even know why I bothered with his films because I don't enjoy them; he's got to be my least favourite actor.) This film inspires to bring in the cash from mainstream cinema-goers who are fascinated by Sandler since his success in Waterboy. This film is a complete waste of time. If you're going to watch it, don't expect too much. Unless, of course, you love Adam Sandler and that type of humor. It's just the typical type of humor that you can watch a couple of times, and then it gets old because you know what is going to happen. 2/10 - I wouldn't bother with it.
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