In The Week Of, Adam Sandler plays the role of Kenny Lustig, a middle-aged family man choosing pride over practicality in the struggle to plan his daughter’s wedding.
Netflix has once again given us a piece of mediocrity, all too familiar in style. The Week Of is an example of recycled material and pint-sized character arcs. Feeling shallow in narrative, The Week Of offers a few quick laughs but essentially falls short of witty and clever humor. Most gags come at the expense of characters with physical or mental abnormalities; a war veteran with no legs, and a boy who can’t function normally due to a list of many triggers. Although this is all executed lightheartedly and without malice, it can’t help but be felt that potentially clever quips were traded in for more obvious cheap and below-the-belt jokes.
The Week Of also plays on stereotypes. Culture as a comedic tool is depended on frequently, including an incompetent Asian man who speaks little English, and Jewish relatives being tight on money. The Week Of is outdated in places, which can lead to a few cringe moments that are more apprehensive than they are funny. Alternatively, The Week Of delivers some cultural cliches that are oddly relatable and on-the-nose; again, the film clearly holds good intentions, so any dated ideas are easily forgiven.
Unfortunately, The Week Of greatly lacks originality, borrowing jokes and inspirations from films such as My Big Fat Greek Wedding and The In-Laws. Similar in style, The Week Of hands the audiences derivative cliches and salvaged character dynamics and relationships. Saying this, if these movies are your cup of tea then I have no doubt that you may enjoy The Week Of too. It’s pleasant and feel-good in nature, consistent in pacing, and the lack of serious content does alternatively provide a laid-back and charming watch.
Adam Sandler plays Kenny Lustig. Subtle in execution, Sandler fails to deliver a protagonist worthy of remembrance. Although innocent and charming in intent, Sandler’s character is frequently lacklustre in action and uninspired in cause. Chris Rock plays alongside Sandler as opposing father of the groom, Kirby Cordice, a womanising surgeon famed for his skill and wealth. Rock’s character felt wasted in The Week Of, not nearly as present on screen as Rock’s talent deserves. The Week Of also boasts the talents of supporting actors Steve Buscemi and Rachel Dratch, both of whom hold their own as unique characters. That being said the ensemble does not reach it’s potential; funny in places, yet lacking in oomph, never quite inspiring passionate laughs.
The Week Of is a demonstration of how ponderous script writing and befuddled storylines marry to create weak narrative points for the film. This, combined with a ludicrous amount of characters (all under one roof) competing for attention, The Week Of struggles to maintain cohesion, jumping from action to action without holding much worth or meaning. The Week Of, although purposefully cramped and disorganised, is a little too much so; too many 2-D characters with feeble motives cause a lack of compassion from the audience to the storyline.
In spite of the movie’s shortcomings, The Week Of is still an enjoyable way to spend a couple of hours. Not heavy in influence nor the strongest in comedy, The Week Of still flows with charm and appeal. With heart-warming moments and good intent, I expect The Week Of to appeal to a large audience, a relaxing afternoon watch when you don’t want to think too much about what’s on the screen.
Overall The Week Of has its faults. It certainly falls under the category of a “Netflix film” and probably wont go down as a classic. Disregarding this, The Week Of was still enjoyable and likeable for all it’s quirks. As far as Netflix movies go, this is one of the more feel-good and watchable. Highly recommend The Week Of for those days when you just want to sit back, relax and smile fondly.
Kelly has been a film critic for Ready Steady Cut since 2018. Kelly gained a BSc in Film Production and Technology leading to her most notable credit for the production designer for a short film screened as part of the London Film Festival line up.