Edge

film review: Punch-Drunk Love ***1/2

There are no better words than punch, drunk and love to describe Adam Sandler’s film resume to date. Most of the time, he gets drunk (Billy Madison), punches people (Happy Gilmore), and falls in love with a girl who does not like him (every movie he’s ever been in). What better way to combine these words than in the film that will change Sandler’s career forever, Punch-Drunk Love?

Long time Sandler-hating critics have been giving him high marks for this movie. Punch-Drunk Love is easily his best acting performance yet, but what no one over 25 seems to understand is that he was never bad before.

Whether he is beating up Bob Barker in Happy Gilmore or acting his heart out in Punch-Drunk Love, Sandler has the ability to ooze his personality into a role, making the character become him, instead of vice versa. His past movies never impressed critics, probably because older film enthusiasts don’t find things like a slow-witted football player tackling his college professor during class to be life-affirming.

Punch-Drunk Love is sure to satisfy these critics. Sandler is funny with stopwatch precision, and downright scary in other scenes. His boiling rage is showcased perfectly by writer/director Paul Thomas Anderson, leaping past any of the other filmmakers he has worked with. For once, Sandler is not in an “Adam Sandler movie.”

Anderson is certainly not a mainstream director. His last two films, Boogie Nights and Magnolia, were critically acclaimed and won notable awards, but did not slay with the popcorn-guzzling moviegoers. It is ironic that Anderson would partner with Sandler, whose movies make hundreds of millions in profit, but are hated by critics and road-kill outside of the MTV Movie Awards.

What Anderson has done, basically, is create a super-quirky twist to the normal Sandler plot. In Punch-Drunk Love, Sandler plays Barry Egan, a normal guy with abnormal problems. Barry is very reserved due to growing up with seven sisters. He is na

November 5, 2002

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

Friday was strange for Gino DiMare. It wasn’t because his whole family went out to the mound at Alex ...

One thing was obvious to Wayne Younger the first time he got his hands on Ladarius Tennison: The ath ...

Though it’s early, UM already has assembled an outstanding nine-member 2020 recruiting class, a grou ...

Three days before they open their season against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights, the Miami Hurricanes h ...

The first half of Wednesday night’s game was as lousy as the weather outside the Watsco Center, as t ...

UM alumna Alina Mayo Azze, who has covered a myriad of topics during her 37-year career, has been a ...

Happiness and well-being scholar Tal Ben-Shahar is UM’s newest Distinguished Presidential Scholar. ...

The University of Miami will host the first symposium to explore LGBTQ human rights across the Ameri ...

UM experts react to a new ban that prohibits people in Key West from using certain types of sunscree ...

A matchmaker extraordinaire, Ricardo Cepeda, the manager of the UM Zebrafish Facility, is passionate ...

The University of Miami baseball team opened the Gino DiMare era with a record-setting victory over ...

The Canes open the 75th season in program history and first under the direction of head coach Gino D ...

Game time is 6 p.m. in Chestnut Hill, Mass. ...

The No. 20 Miami women's basketball team will play its second top-five foe in a span of three g ...

The University of Miami golf team heads to the Big Easy to open competition Sunday at the 2019 Allst ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.