You can't really understand what someone else is going through until you've walked a mile in their shoes.
I'm sure you've heard this one before, right? It's a good saying, simple and fairly straightforward. It's a phrase that provides both the speaker and the listener a nice metaphor to mull over. In a world where most (if not all) conflict comes from a lack of understanding, it works.
Unless of course you take it literally. Then it's kind of stupid.
Rented (as the free second movie) seemingly months ago, The Cobbler is the latest entry into the mindf--k that is the Adam Sandler resume. While the idea might have worked on paper, the resulting execution left a little something to be desired. Which is odd, because I wasn't expecting much.
Sandler, free of many of his usual co-conspirators, stars as Max Simkin, a lonely shoe repairman in NYC. Initially Max is one of those characters that knows his life is shit, but doesn't really seem to care one way or another. His job sucks, he lives with his mom, and his only friend is a similarly downtrodden schlub, Jimmy, who happens to own a barber shop next door.
Whilst cobbling, um, and stuff, Max's machine breaks down and he is forced to use an old family relic to get the job done. Turns out, ye old cobbling machine has magical powers, and surprising no one, allows the shoemaker access to, you know, stroll a predetermined unit of distance in their footwear.
Yes. You read that right. He fixes their shoes and then he becomes them. And by them, obviously I mean M-E-T, H-O-D Man.
Not that you ever would, but you could accurately guess about 99% of what is going to happen in this movie without ever having to actually watch it. Max will indeed learn something about someone else by walking in their shoes, but it's just so f--king random. There is no great life lesson, and the one tender thing he does learn is not only super f--king creepy, but it's surprisingly deadly, too.
Ultimately, Sandler's Max spends most of his time as mid-level crook Leon Ludlow (Method Man, totally belonging on the poster), the muscle in an absurdly ill-conceived real-estate scandal. While I might have supported an eighties-style sex-romp (like, why's Brenda wearing her shoes in our communal shower?) or a re-imagining of Quantum Leap, instead The Cobbler is content to keep not only the scope small, but the laughs too. It's not as bad as it looks, but it ain't exactly good either.
Speaking of moderate disappointments, here are the Yays and Boos. We're five movies in the hole, but after this one...well, we're still pretty much f--ked.
|This is the worst shower curtain ever.|
Unless you take a half-step in either erection.
- I mentioned Jimmy, but I didn't mention that he's played by Steve Buscemi. Even given basically nothing to do, I always stand up and clap for Garland Greene.
- The initial unveiling of the ability to change lives is kind of funny. That Chinese guy ruled.
- So, um, Shower Chick? She gets just about as naked as possible...you know, without getting naked at all.
- At one point, Max puts on some really old shoes. I'll let you guess why the result scared the shit out of some high school punks.
- And finally, for a tired prick trying to pull off a double-feature....this movie's short. Ish.
|Sandler, before he called his agent.|
- So, remember Shower Chick? Well, Max totally blows this whole situation. And in his blowing, no one gets blown. Read it again, I think it works.
- I'm telling you, not every movie needs a romantic angle. Mad Max knew this, Sullen Max does not. But even worse? What we get here makes no sense. Logistically or otherwise.
- Everything having to do with Max's dad is the worst. I was so angered by this I covered my ears and screamed Hot water burn baby! over and over.
- Man, Method Man's character is pretty much a bastard. An old, dirty one at that.
- What the f--k, Ellen Barkin? No, seriously, answer the question. What. The. F--k.
- So, that basement is so big, I'm pretty sure the f--king ninja turtles live there. Like, they have to.
- And finally, this story comes from the guy that came up with Up? I appreciate how totally random that is...but c'mon, man? Shoes? He walks in their shoes? Talking dogs? Yes. Talking shoes? F--k no.
You know, a lot of people enjoy taking shots at Adam Sandler. They love to go on and on about how all he does is make a bunch of shitty movies with his stupid friends. That he was sooooo good in Punch Drunk Love, but now he's a f--king joke that only wants to see Rose McGowan in a low-cut shirt. You know what, you guys? You know what you should do with all that hate for another human being? All that misunderstanding?
I'll let you guess.