Once again, Adam Sandler plays a benign, gentle
soul caught up in a world full of chaos and idiots -- in this
case a psychotic anger management coach. Its a Sandler
storyline weve seen countless times before, only the
names and faces have been changed.
Timid and non-confrontational, David Buznik (Sandler) is a
cat-clothing designer for overweight felines. For years, his
boss (Kurt Fuller) has stolen credit for the creation of the
Husky clothing line. Finally the cubicle worker,
who is hoping for a promotion, gets a chance to attend a presentation
in another city. But a misunderstanding during the airline
journey rouses the ire of a flight attendant and the Air Marshall
who takes down the self-effacing traveler with a tazer. David
is sent before Judge Daniels (Lynne Thigpen) and sentenced
to attend an anger management course run by Dr. Buddy Rydell
(Jack Nicholson). However, the group session, full of off-the-wall
class members, is a bit overwhelming for the hesitant groupie
who initially refuses to get involved.
Pairing David with an explosive anger ally named Chuck (John
Turturro), Dr. Rydell ensures the tentative client its
a healthy part of the program until the two partners get caught
up in a barroom brawl. The unlucky mishap sends David back
to court. To help him avoid time in the state pen, Rydell
offers to intensify his patients treatment routine by
moving into his apartment, sharing his bed and making bawdy
comments about his girlfriend, Linda (Marisa Tomei). He goads
the mild-mannered office worker incessantly and pushes David
into one uncomfortable and compromising situation after another.
Its a rehabilitation regime that borders on insanity
and makes self-help options look increasingly appealing.
Unfortunately, nothing else about the film is appealing at
all. Someone had to do some smooth talking or throw a real
good tantrum to get this previously R-rated film squeezed
into a PG-13 classification. While outright nudity may be
missing, there is enough other sexual content stuffed into
this script for at least a dozen films. A lesbian couple makes
out during a group session while the rest of the male class
members look on, hooting either their approval or aversion.
Later, the girls are all over each other in a public restaurant.
A flood of profanities including a sexual expletive and hand
gesture along with male anatomy discussions, depictions of
bestiality, oral sex references, cross-dressing prostitutes
and sick pick-up lines are all examples of the films
Gags involving air rage and gun use, which might have been
comical in an early time (though I cant think when that
would be), are totally unfunny considering the increase of
these real life outbursts. Religious figures, war vets, racial
groups, sports celebrities and politicians all take their
turn at being the brunt of this movies jokes.
While temper taming is a much-needed skill in society, this
Anger Management session will leave most parents feeling hot
under the collar.