You Don't Mess With The Zohan

Out Now On-Demand

The prolific Adam Sandler stars as Zohan, a tough-as-nails Israeli commando who fakes his own death in order to pursue his dream: being a hair stylist in New York City.

It's got his two genius co-stars from Mr. Deeds; Johnny McEnroe and John Turturro, as well as Chris Rock and the always great Henry Wrinkler. Co-written by the golden boy of comedy, Judd Apatow (Superbad, Knocked Up, The 40-Year-Old Virgin).

Trailers

Directed by

Comedy

113mins

Rating: M ontains offensive language and sexual references

USA

Official Site

flicks

Adam Sandler has big aims with You Don’t Mess with the Zohan. As the film goes on, it becomes increasingly clear that his goal for the work is nothing less than bringing about peace in the Middle East.

Picture this: a group of Israeli and Palestinian stereotypes, some of them white Americans in crude brownface, stand airing their differences. It’s pointed out that Americans dislike all of them equally; the crowd erupts into laughter, a character pointing out (in exaggerated raspy accent), “well, we do all look the same!”

You start to wonder if Sandler, eminent humorist though he is, may be doing this particular cause more harm than good.

Oh, certainly, his depiction of the immigrant experience as a disheartening, humourless grind of nauseating humiliation may give bigots pause before they toss jibes at the next Middle Eastern expatriate to cross their path; after all, one of those expatriates might be a cocoa-buttered-up Rob Schneider, and if we as a society can agree on one thing, it’s that Rob Schneider is not to be laughed at.

And his choice to give the film’s cast of broad ethnic stereotypes a bizarre mixture of Spartans-esque reference-in-lieu-of-wit faux-humour and lame, outdated cultural callbacks (most of the film’s anti-Semite jabs use Mel Gibson as their punchline, in reference to an event that took place in 2006) is in keeping with the quietly tragic fish-out-of-water tone, which might be charitably dubbed “poor man’s Borat”.

The picture’s constant parade of misery wears on, however: 113 minutes feel like 130, so bereft are they of anything that might conceivably be called “a joke” or “humour”. Sandler and cowriter Judd Apatow have made a brave attempt at cultural change here, but should in the future stick to comedy.


Hollywood Reporter

press

The comedy star's legions of fans will welcome the cheerfully crude proceedings as a return to silliness after several earnest, lower-key character turns. The melange of Middle East diplomacy, action absurdity, sexual healing and, when in doubt, hummus, wavers between muscular and middling. It's a surefire hit.

Los Angeles Times

press

As another run-of-the-mill Sandler movie, it is better than most. At this point it seems a little foolish to want, let alone expect, "more" from the guy. If he can't be bothered to put more effort into his films, why should anybody else?

NZ Herald [Francesca Rudkin]

press

It's also heavily reliant on cultural references to Jews and Palestinians and cliched views of how Americans see Middle Eastern immigrants. It shows Sandler at his silliest, and has occasional amusing moments, but you have to be a very forgiving fan to cope with its near two-hour running time.

Rolling Stone [USA]

press

By the end of the film, the cliché of everybody getting along is reduced to both sides working together in the ultimate monument to capitalism: a mall. Some message.

Salon.com

press

The movie "Munich" should have been. At the very least, it's got to be the first picture to use smelly-feet jokes as a means of parsing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But more than that, it's a mainstream movie that dares to make jokes about the kinds of complex political realities that most of us don't dare bring up at dinner parties.

The Christchurch Press [James Croot]

press

Despite a mid-career attempt at breaking out of his comfort zone with the likes of Punch Drunk Love and Spanglish, America's favourite man-child has recently returned to his routinely mediocre and mildly misogynist formula. Depressingly, the originality of his early delights like Happy Gilmore has been replaced by a predictable Carry On-esque mix of scatological gags, sex jokes, animal cruelty and a Rob Schneider cameo.

Variety [USA]

press

The off-the-wall comedy of Robert Smigel and Judd Apatow leaves a mark on the script, but it would require a talent of Peter Sellers' magnitude to conquer this material, and he's not around.

You Want Hummus or some sticky sticky

Im a huge Adam Sandler fan love his films except for Punch Drunk Love.Adam plays the role of a Israeli Counter Terios operative who is a babe magnet in Israel but he gets sick and tired of these and wants to become a hairdresser and decides to move to America lots of bad Sex jokes and is the usual Adam Sandler Fare but is really funny

Disgusting

user


Disgusting

One of the worst freakin' films ever. I'm sorry, but the occasional laughter will NOT overlook the blatant stereotyping, sick sexual references and the animal abuse.

This film should crash, burn and die, be boycotted, and labelled as one of the circles of hell.

GOLD

user


GOLD

Absolute gold. :D

Poor

user


Poor

this is Sandler at his worst. Great Flicks review though! Far funnier than the film.

Absolutely terrible.

user


Absolutely terrible.

I'm an Adam Sandler fan, but this is amongst his worst. And when he's bad he's bad.

Laugh Out Loud!!!

user


Laugh Out Loud!!!

I really enjoyed this movie


Had it moments

laughed outloud a few times but not much. Liked the portrayal of the Palestinian/Israeli conflict. Took t2 11 year old boys who laughed at the sightgag stuff but didn't get the sexual stuff. So for Adam Sandler not his best wo9rk but ok overall

great movie

user


great movie

I LOVED THIS MOVIE IT WAS AWESOME AND I ENJOYED EVERY MINUTE OF IT