'The Week Of' retells cliche storyline with little change

We’ve all seen that movie – the one where the bride and groom are going to get married but the family messes it all up one way or another. We know all the character types; the wacky relatives, the weird relatives, the good, bad and ugly that make up every family in every movie. We’ve seen Adam Sandler being a family man and we’ve heard Chris Rock’s funny one-liners. And that’s just the problem with “The Week Of” on Netflix: we’ve basically already seen it.

Directed by Robert Smigel and filled with a promising cast of comedians like Sandler, Rock, Steve Buscemi and Rachel Dratch, as well as a broad storyline about marriage and merging families, the movie seemed like it could be the ultimate comedy-drama-romance film. However, this movie brought nothing new to the table and instead recycled the same cliche narrative that Hollywood has done a million times before.

The movie begins on a Monday, and very slowly progresses day-by-day leading up to Saturday – the day of the wedding. The slow progression of the film is really drawn out, as the audience literally sees each morning and night and everything in between of each day throughout the week. At some points, the movie feels like it is moving in real time.

Along the way, the audience sees few appearances from the highly bated Rock and Buscemi. Instead, viewers follow Sandler as he scrambles to accommodate all the strange family members that are picked from every other movie made before this one. Trying to add humor to the dry plot, Smigel makes Sandler balance all the wackiness and stress that comes with wedding planning on a very small budget. In fact, the plot revolves around Sandler not having a lot of money to give his daughter a big, lavish wedding.

 

Furthermore, Smigel filled the film with scenes that often try too hard and as a result, end up coming off as awkward and distasteful, including some jokes on mental health and racism. Between the two families—the Jewish American girl marrying the African-American guy—there was a lot of room to embrace different cultures and the difficulties that come up when trying to merge two of them together. Unfortunately, Smigel just missed his opportunity to do so and instead covered it up with bad humor.

Sandler, known for his big roles in “50 First Dates,” “Click” and “Happy Gilmore,” has recently been getting a lot of mediocre reviews for his recent roles, especially in his other Netflix originals. This is just another movie to add to that same list as Sandler’s career slows.

“The Week Of” is Sandler’s first widely promoted film of 2018, as well as being Rock’s first movie of the year, too. Sandler has several credits in other films such as “Hotel Transylvania” in 2017. However, this is Rock’s first film appearance since his last movie, “Sandy Wexler,” another poorly reviewed film with Sandler.

Overall, this movie was incredibly disappointing. Sandler and Rock have both starred in many staple movies – the kind of movie that audiences will watch and then watch again and probably again too. Unfortunately, “The Week Of” is not one of those movies; the plot was slow, the movie was long and the jokes were unoriginal.