Zohan Sticks to the Lowbrow

'Likeable' film doesn't match satirical potential
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jun 6, 2008 1:34 PM CDT
Adam Sandler rides on the back of a car as he shoots a scene from "You Don't Mess with the Zohan" under production on Park Avenue in Manhattan, Monday, July 30, 2007.    (AP Photo/Larry Levine)
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(Newser) – The Adam Sandler comedy You Don’t Mess With the Zohan may be fun, but it probably won't do much for those outside the usual Sandler audience of teenage boys. The story of an Israeli commando-turned-hairdresser is full of “missed opportunities for sharpening silliness with satire,” writes Peter Travers in Rolling Stone. Sandler’s “need to service his fan base” clashes with his “nascent maturity,” notes Mark Olsen in the Los Angeles Times.

Richard Schickel is more forgiving in Time. While he notes that the film is “slightly rickety,” it’s still a “virtually bullet-proof blend for the mass, summertime audience,” he writes. “It’s just out for a good, slightly silly, time.” As a satire, Olsen says, “it misses more than it hits. As another run-of-the-mill Sandler movie, it is better than most.”