The Benchwarmers (2006)
Directed By: Dennis Dugan
Writers: Allen Cover, Nick Swardson
Starring: Rob Schneider, David Spade, Jon Heder, Jon Lovitz, Nick Swardson
My rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
This past weekend was kind of a "movie weekend" for me. After a Friday night with The Avengers I moved on to a sillier weekend. This is one of my all time favorite "stupid" comedies, The Benchwarmers.
I'm sure most of you are turned off just by the look of it. But, Happy Madison (Adam Sandler's production company) produced this movie, so if you are a Sandler fan, well...this is right up your alley.
I saw this movie for the first time in 2006 in theatres (and owned it since it's 2006 DVD release). I believe I was finishing up my junior year in high school. I was a with a group, and don't remember entirely who I was with, except I distinctly remember that Drew Allen and Ben Bradley were there...but I digress.
What it's about:
Clark (Jon Heder; Napoleon Dynamite) and Gus (Rob Schneider; The Animal) stumble upon a kid getting bullied on a baseball field. Gus runs them off, and finds out that Clark has never played baseball, because if he went near a baseball field as a kid, he'd get bullied. They make an appointment to come back out and hit some balls, and Clark brings Richie (David Spade; Joe Dirt) who has also never played baseball, along with him. They run into some kids upon their return that are obviously bullies, and the bullies demand that the field be given up. Gus says "we'll play you for it". Even though Clark and Richie are incompetent, Gus wins the game for them. Afterwards, they are approached by Mel (Jon Lovitz; Rat Race) who wants to start a movement to teach bullies all across the world a lesson. They agree, and begin a round robin tournament with the meanest teams in the league.
What I think:
The whole movie is really, really hilarious. It has that quotable quality that only some films have. The comedy not only uses words but is also very physical, and I'm a huge fan of physical comedy. My brother Joshua and I watched this together over the weekend and laughed constantly throughout. The message (like most movies involving or produced by Sandler) is a positive one, speaking out against bullying and encouraging people to stand up for themselves. The movie has lots of children in the cast and speaks to children, so with a little parental bleeping, (or maybe the TBS version) this would be a great family movie to watch together.
Sidenote: One of the best tools this movie possesses is the former professional athletes who have roles in it, like Bill Romanowski, Sean Salisbury, and Reggie Jackson (or as Mel says "Reggie Reggie Oxen Free"). Their participation adds not only to the comedy but to the validity of the message.
What can we learn from it?:
It's been said already: Bullying. It's happening everywhere and it has to stop. It happened to me as a child, and my self worth even into my 20's has been crippled. One of the hardest things I've ever had to do is turn my head away from what other people think, especially about me. I am proud to say that I've recovered from that part of my life, but some scars take a long time to heal.
I'm getting off topic a little, but I find that I very rarely disagree with a message that an Adam Sandler movie carries, and this one is no different.
To sum it up:
This movie is worth watching. It doesn't have particularly good ratings on IMDB or Rotten Tomatoes, but trust me on this one. If you've agreed with me on any of my other reviews, you'll enjoy this movie. It's funny, only slightly inappropriate (let's face it, movies today are way worse) and it has a good message. Do whatever you have to to watch this movie at least once. It's not Oscar quality, but then again, who cares what they think? :)
Please let me know if you read this!! I hope you enjoyed it! As always, comment on Facebook, on here, or at least click the little clicky boxes below! I have at least two more reviews coming soon, and thanks so much (again) for reading!