Adam Sandler has done it again. No, he didn’t bring in a stunning performance to follow up Uncut Gems, he brought us another stupid movie that we can love: Hubie Halloween.
Ever since his movie career began in the 90s, Sandler has brought us countless flicks that have ridiculous premises, but lovable characters who deliver humor that can be described as none other than guilty pleasure. From Billy Madison, Happy Gilmore, The Waterboy, and Big Daddy, countless laughs have been produced from first watching these films to quoting them in front of our friends. And like all of Sandler’s films since the 90s, they include tributes to the iconic characters and jokes from those name-making movies. Hubie Halloween proves no different, as we see references to the O’Doyle family, Orderly Hal played by Ben Stiller, and cameos from star after star after star that he has collaborate with in the past.
Hubie Halloween follows its title character, Hubie Dubois, a zealous idiot with a heart of gold, despite being the constant object of ridicule from people he’s known his whole life in his hometown of Salem, Massachusetts. Although he is an idiot, Hubie happens to possess stuntman-like skills and a trusty thermos that can get assist him in any situation, and it might as well have been made by Q in the 007 franchise. When trouble breaks out on Halloween night, Hubie must win the trust of his neighbors in order to solve the mysterious disappearances of townsfolk.
Hubie appears to be along the likes of one of Sandler’s earlier characters, Bobby Boucher from The Waterboy; however, this character does not match the potential when it comes to humor and lovability.It starts off slow, but there are plenty of laugh-out-loud moments as it progresses. But it does dabble in the sentimental, as it also presents cliched, but true, life lessons.
Sandler should not be dismissed as a one-trick pony for this ridiculous movies. We must remember he has delivered repeatedly with Punch Drunk Love, Reign Over Me, and most recently Uncut Gems (one viewer was so impressed that he personally called Sandler to share his satisfaction, and that was none other than Daniel Day-Lewis). But why does he continue to produce his name-brand humor when he could be collecting award after award and potentially collaborate with greats like Scorsese? I can only speculate one reason: he likes to do it.
From a critic’s perspective, this movie fails at artistic achievements (though not as bad as Jack and Jill). It’s just another Adam Sandler movie, but that’s good enough for me. This will not be added to any special lists by the American Film Institute, nor will it be included in the Criterion Collection. No, it will remain on Netflix to be seen while scrolling through selections as you and your friends seek a good time.