REVIEW: The Cobbler

20 07 2015

The CobblerTom McCarthy may soon bear an ignominious distinction in the history of my sight, going from making my #1 film in 2011, “Win Win,” to likely one of the worst in 2015 with “The Cobbler.”  This adult fairytale, co-written with Paul Sado, makes “Click” feel like it possesses the profundity of an Aesop’s Fable.  It’s all of the magic with none of the heart.

Adam Sandler stars as Max Simkin, a pickle-munching mensch on the Lower East Side, who reluctantly becomes the “guardian of souls.”  It’s a title not only better deployed within the context of a Marvel movie but also a pretty terrible pun since Max is a cobbler who works with soles.  In a strange turn of events, Max discovers that he can literally walk around as his clients if he walks arounds in their shoes … because magic.

Shockingly, Sandler’s character takes a whopping half-hour to discover the potential of the shoes for sex.  “The Cobbler” bops around from episode to episode, most stupid but a few touching, all the while squandering a great opportunity for an obvious message. The premise of the story effortlessly lends itself to discussing cultural differences and the understanding we can gain by learning through experience.

But sadly, this isn’t a Tom McCarthy movie, not really.  It’s an Adam Sandler movie.  In his movies, social commentary would never get in the way of entertaining genre fare.  Shame on us for assuming anything might be different here.  C2stars



7 responses

26 07 2015

I think there’s a lesson to all of this. Just don’t put Adam Sandler in any movie at all. He’s pretty much a cancer these days except to the lowest common denominator.

26 07 2015

I think he’s done fine in films like Punch Drunk Love and Funny People, but his risks are never rewarded at the box office. I think he could use new management to find him some good indie projects as opposed to this kind of garbage. Who’s to say he couldn’t be the next Bill Murray if he tried? The operating word, there, is “try.” And I don’t get the sense Sandler wants to try.

26 07 2015

That’s because all he cares about is making money and make us feel stupid.

22 08 2015

The way you review movies reminds me of Roger Ebert.
Here, for instance, you claim this is one of the worst movies of the year, and yet your letter grading is a C, which although mediocre, does not make it seem an egregious abomination.
Ebert said on more than one occasion how if it was up to him he’d get rid of the star rating altogether. You were meant to read his essays and not just glance at how many stars a particular movie had been awarded.

This begs the questions: What is your rating template? Does it go from F all the way to A+?
For me, C+ and lower means a failing grade.
Most movies usually hover around the B category; then we have the elusive A-, A and the most glorious A+.

22 08 2015

I go all the way to F but think I have only given one or two ever. I think to devote yourself to writing about the cinema and to have a positive impact on the discourse around it must also involve some understanding of the often years of toil to put something on screen. And I’m supposed to judge it after having spent two hours with it? Unless something just feels like an egregious waste of my time or money, I can usually keep a bad film in the C range. I’m with you, anything below C is bad – it just indicates how angry I felt after watching it.

And I appreciate any connection or comparison to Ebert. Truly!

22 08 2015

I agree. Sometimes when I’m watching a really bad movie, I have to remind myself that I’ve no idea how difficult it must have been to get it all done and finally reach the screen. Having just checked my notes, the only film I assigned an F to this year has been…Horns!

22 08 2015

The promotional tour Daniel Radcliffe did for “Horns” was infinitely better than the movie.

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