Blu-ray Review That's My Boy Blu-ray Review

Richard Gallagher

Senior HTF Member
Dec 9, 2001
Fishkill, NY
Real Name
Rich Gallagher
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Adam Sandler's latest comedy, That's My Boy, is crude, profane, scatological, sophomoric, predictable, overlong, offensive and morally bankrupt. However, all of those sins might have been forgivable if the movie were funny. Unfortunately, in spite of the fact that Sandler and his talented cast try hard, the laughs are few and far between.

That's My Boy

Studio: Sony
Year: 2012
Rated: R
Program Length: 116 minutes                  
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1 1080p
Languages: English 5.1 DTS-HD MA, French Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish

The Program

Adam Sandler's latest comedy, That's My Boy, is crude, profane, scatological, sophomoric, predictable, overlong, offensive and morally bankrupt. However, all of those sins might have been forgivable if the movie were funny. Unfortunately, in spite of the fact that Sandler and his talented cast try hard, the laughs are few and far between.

The film opens in Somerville, Massachusetts in 1984. Donny Berger, a junior high student, has scored tickets to a Van Halen concert and he makes a pass at his hot teacher, Miss McGarricle (Eva Amurri Martino). Donny is rewarded with a month of detention, but during the first session Miss McGarricle comes onto him and before long they are going it in her office, in her home, and behind the curtains of the school auditorium. As I watched the opening scenes, I found myself wondering if Sandler would have thought that this premise was funny if the teacher had been a man and the student had been a junior high girl.

Donny and his teacher are caught, of course, and Miss McGarricle is convicted and sentenced to 30 years in prison. At her sentencing we observe that she is very, very pregnant, and the exasperated judge announces that custody of the baby will be given to Donny's father until Donny reaches the age of 18 (how, in the pre-DNA era, it was determined that Donny is the father is left unexplained).

The opening credits then roll and we learn that Donny's sexual exploits turned him into a celebrity, even to the point where a movie was made of his life. When the action resumes, however, 25 years have passed and Donny (Adam Sandler) has fallen on hard times. The baby turned out to be a boy, but he and Donny have had no contact in years. Donny has burned through all of the money he made, and when he meets with his tax adviser (played surprisingly well by New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan) he gets the bad news that he is going to be sent to prison for tax evasion unless he can come up with $43,000 over the Memorial Day weekend.

Donny then sees a notice in the society pages of the newspaper that his son (Andy Samberg) is getting married on Cape Cod. Donny named his son Han Solo, but the boy became so disenchanted by Donny's lifestyle and reputation that he changed his name to Todd and became a successful hedge fund manager. When reality television host Randall Morgan (Dan Patrick) learns that Donny has found his son, he offers to pay Donny enough money to pay off his tax debt if he will arrange a televised reunion featuring Donny, Todd and Miss McGarricle (who is still in prison - no parole for her, obviously). Donny then crashes the pre-wedding festivities and tries to con Todd into visiting his imprisoned mother.

The rather unseemly premise of the film aside, That's My Boy is replete with juvenile bathroom jokes, it makes obnoxious fun of ridiculously obese people, and it celebrates drunken and destructive behavior. This film might be for you if your idea of a good time is watching scenes of Adam Sandler masturbating all night and a lineup of drunken men urinating in full view of diner patrons. Andy Samberg is only adequate playing a version of the roles he used to portray on Saturday Night Live, and chemistry between Todd and his fiancée, Jamie (Leighton Meester), is lacking. The supporting cast includes Tony Orlando, James Caan, Vanilla Ice, Will Forte, Rachel Dratch, and Nick Swardson. A few moments of genuine humor are provided in cameos by Ana Gasteyer as the proprietor of a men's spa and Susan Sarandon as Miss McGarricle in prison, and Peggy Stewart is mildly amusing as a feisty grandmother. I have no idea how much control director Sean Anders had over this mess, but at nearly two hours it is overlong by at least 30 minutes.

Adam Sandler has made a career out of playing perpetual adolescents, but the formula is showing signs of wearing thin. That's My Boy reportedly cost $70 million to make and it has barely earned back half that amount at the box office. The film was generally savaged by critics, but poor reviews have rarely kept Sandler's fans away from theaters. Those who are amused by his shtick may enjoy That's My Boy. For everyone else, you have been warned.

The Video

The 2.40:1 1080p image is given the typically outstanding Blu-ray treatment for which Sony is known. The exteriors were filmed on location in Massachusetts and the New England coast has never looked better. Colors are vivid and accurate, the image is consistently sharp and highly detailed, black levels are solid and shadow detail is excellent. There is no evidence of excessive digital manipulation or other anomalies.

The Audio

The 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack is outstanding. There is a great deal of music in this film, and each number is given a wide and pleasing soundstage. The surround channels are effectively used to provide ambient sounds, and more powerful audio kicks in during car scenes when Donny is rushing to the prison and the wedding. Dialogue is mostly confined to the center channel and it is consistently clear and understandable.

The Supplements

The extras on this Blu-ray include a gag reel which runs for six minutes. Five deleted scenes can be viewed either consecutively or one at a time.

"Who Are All These People" is an 11-minute featurette which gives an opportunity for most of the principal actors to briefly discuss their roles.

"Greetings From Cape Cod" is a tedious 7-minute featurette in which seemingly every member of the cast gets to growl "Whassup?" at the camera.

"Classy Rick's Bacon and Leggs" is a six-minute featurette in which several of the cast members talk about their experiences filming scenes in the strip club which is featured throughout the film.

Sony also has included previews of Men in Black 3, Total Recall, The Amazing Spider-Man, Looper, and Safety Not Guaranteed.

The Packaging

That's My Boy is packaged in a standard Blu-ray keep case. Included are instructions for downloading an UltraViolet version of the film.
The Final Analysis

In the review I have enumerated many reasons why I cannot recommend this film. Of course, Adam Sandler fans have seen similar movies from him in the past and they may feel differently.

Equipment used for this review:

Panasonic DMP-BD50 Blu-ray player
Panasonic Viera TC-P46G15 Plasma display, calibrated to THX specification by Gregg Loewen
Yamaha HTR-5890 THX Surround Receiver
BIC Acoustech speakers
Interconnects: Monster Cable

Release Date: October 16, 2012


Aaron Silverman

Senior HTF Member
Jan 22, 1999
Real Name
Aaron Silverman
They spent $70 million on this?!?!?! I thought the whole point of raunchy comedies was that they don't cost that much to make.

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