- Directed by Dennis Dugan
- June 25, 1999
A man who gets dumped by his girlfriend for not being responsible tries to be responsible by adopting a five-year-old boy who appears on his doorstep.
Adam Sandler has a certain comedic style that he honed on shows like Remote Control on MTV and SNL. It is loud and it is ludicrous. But he can also do sweet and tender despite the weirdness of whatever movie he crafts. Just Go with It, Hubie Halloween, and even this movie fall into that mold. The man has talent beyond making entertaining juvenile humor films. He can bring emotion when needed.
Here he plays Sonny Koufax, a slacker who is comfortable enough in his life. He has the goods to do better but Sonny just does not have the motivation. But when he has to watch Julian (Dylan and Cole Sprouse), a small child that may be his roommate’s kid, he finds that there is more to life than doing whatever and slacking off.
You actually do feel a little for the character as he grows and matures despite this growth and maturity being an unintended side effect of keeping a kid that is not his in order to win a girlfriend back that he realizes by the end just was never right for him.
Joey Lauren Adams as Layla is rather effective as the woman Sonny finds himself drawn towards as he matures. Sandler and Adams have good chemistry together and you can buy that her character is falling for his.
The film contains the usual cast of Adam Sandler cohorts. Rob Schneider, Allen Covert, Peter Dante, Steve Buscemi, Jackie Sandler, and Steven Brill all have parts of one size or another and have all shown up before or since in his films. These are all people he has known for many years and whatever else you might say about him it is cool that Sandler finds ways to work with his friends. Who would not want to have a job where they go to work with their long-term friends and have fun? And truthfully the fun they have translates from the screen to the viewer.
Of his supporting players my favorite is always Allen Covert. The guy just has a great delivery that makes his lines that much funnier, and I always enjoy what he does.
It’s weird that the two actors that play Julian (Dylan and Cole Sprouse), the child that gets the plot going, are now adults doing this and that. I saw this film when it came out in theaters and for that much time to have passed is just shocking to me. It really drives home how old I am. They do well enough and show hints of being competent performers. It is interesting to see that they were able to build on that.
The jokes land pretty funny here. They’re all of the juvenile type and truthfully nothing is really dated here. You’ll laugh though at some points you might feel little bad that you’re laughing. Not because the joke is inappropriate because it’s just so stupid.
The jokes aren’t rapid fire, but they are well paced. And the finale is a nice postscript to everything that happened. It is set probably about a year after the courtroom scene, and we see Sonny building a life for himself and most importantly his ex-girlfriend is now working at Hooters. Hooters is a bit of a running gag in the film.
Big Daddy is a funny and heartwarming story that is still very entertaining. You should take a look at this.