The Wedding Singer

This was the second in my triple-rom-com-feature, a blank I had meant to fill in many years ago, but didn’t, thanks to my dad’s strict No Sandler In The House policy. Today, I feel especially compelled to write about this cute flick after seeing its star kill it on Fallon last night.

The Wedding Singer oozes late-90s, despite taking place sometime in the 80s, which is oddly not unappealing. The production values are rather perfect for what the movie ends up being. And Adam Sandler, despite his recent creative downturn, is at peak charm here. It’s easy to forget Jack and Jill and Grown-Ups when he plays romantic leads (as opposed to man-children; see also: Billy Madison or Little Nicky), because there’s something so everyman and likable about him. He knows exactly who he is, he’s never arrogant, he’s nearly always soft-spoken and humble, and he doesn’t play games. He’s got a great, effortless presence and a realistic vibe. He’s a guy you could see yourself really liking and falling for. And that’s what happens here, with his Robbie and Drew Barrymore’s Julia.

Of course, the movie isn’t without its rom-com tropes. There’s a left-at-the-altar scene, a handful of sidelong glances, a Big Confrontation, and an amusing celebrity cameo. And everyone’s hair is bad. But Barrymore and Sandler have a sweet chemistry together, bound in years of friendship, and it’s neat that they’ve gotten to make a few movies together. They’re big stars without being glamorous, and even though they’re in a rom-com, they shorten the gap between the genre’s unrealistic expectations of love and actual, meaningful representations of love in real life.

Then again, I was watching this on a plane. Maybe I had a case of Altitude Sentimentality. Whatever. This movie is delightful, and I know understand the “Julia Guglia” reference.

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