Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Cruise, Sandler Bomb: The Eighties May Be Over At Last

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Tom Cruise and Adam Sandler had the worst opening weekends ever for any of their stand alone movies. It’s 2012. The 1980s may finally be over. For years Sandler has cruised on the same formula movie of a manchild who can’t or won’t grow up. Usually he’s oversized baby who speaks in funny voices and does stuff that’s borderline mentally handicapped. If there was any thought to any of it, it’s long gone. And into every one of these films was stuffed some sort of lesson or moral tale that proved Sandler’s character knew more than he was letting on. But with “That’s My Boy” he even tried to destroy Andy Samberg before his own career could get out of the gate. Samberg is 100 times hipper and smarter. He will escape Sandler’s clutches. But with $13 million for the entire first weekend, Sandler would be smart now to just play some golf and make occasional appearances. He’s landed right in Eddie Murphy country.

For Cruise, the stakes are higher. His “Rock of Ages” disaster comes at the end of a succession of oddities. While “Mission Impossible” only serves him well, “regular’ movies are a problem. Now the marketing geniuses will have to start planning his Christmas release, “Reacher,” a thriller that’s supposed to be the first of many in a new series. There are already complaints that the Jack Reacher from the book it’s based on is six foot five, and unlike Cruise in every way physically. “Rock of Ages” is going to have a long lasting effect as a bomb, so Paramount has a job on its hands to separate Cruise’s improbable 80s rock star from their holiday tentpole. But with lack of interest in Cruise, and the 80s music from “Rock of Ages,” it’s possible that finally the 1980s are over. Maybe a “Top Gun 2” isn’t such a good idea after all.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedmanhttps://www.showbiz411.com
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.
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