If you've followed me for any length of time, you know that I enjoy comedy. That might not be apparent by recent posts, where I kvetch about my age, my health, my weight, my house, my kid, the school system, the government, the quality of restaurants in my neighborhood, the economy, the job market...
(Sheesh. I've been a complete crab lately. But I digress.)
This has not always been the case. There was a time when I had a spring in my step, a song in my heart and hope for a future where I would work as a writer of... comedy.
And then I came to my senses and realized I did not have what it takes to be a comedy writer.
But I'm still an aficionado. I like to laugh (who doesn't?) -- and I don't care where those laughs are coming from.
I am an equal opportunity giggler. I'm just as likely to purchase a ticket to see a sophisticated comedy like Midnight in Paris as I am for something a bit more "lowbrow," like SuperBad or even Reno 911. As the Tonight Show writers used to say when they were ordering me around in the 1980's:
The audience will forgive you anything, as long as it's funny.
So it should not surprise anyone to know that I'm a fan of Adam Sandler (even if I still tend to think of him as that youngster who was SNL's "Opera Man.")
Sandler's movies are often dismissed by critics as juvenile, silly, sophomoric and an excuse to keep casting Rob Schneider (who I still think of as the guy in the SNL copy machine sketch).
But the films succeed for one reason: they're funny and he's funny in them -- and occasionally, he appears in one that transcends his usual goofy persona (Funny People was one with serious undertones).
I was surprised to discover that Adam Sandler has acted in more than 40 motion pictures and television shows -- and is credited as a producer on 37 productions (and a writer on 17). Hollywood doesn't just allow you to have a career like that -- you have to earn it by performing at the box office. And that's exactly what Sandler has done.
My favorites were the two he starred in with Drew Barrymore: The Wedding Singer and 50 First Dates, which were not just funny, but sweet.
And as a parent, I really like the fact that I feel comfortable watching his movies with my daughter, who is a lot more appreciative when they veer towards gross-out comedy -- not that there's anything wrong with that.
After all: The audience will forgive you anything, as long as it's funny.