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Plenty of movies have successfully pulled off an actor playing opposite themselves: Nicolas Cage in Adaptation, Lindsay Lohan in The Parent Trap, Armie Hammer in The Social Network, Edward Norton in Leaves of Grass. But critics and audiences alike are not enjoying the latest twin film to hit the big screen, with Adam Sandler playing both title characters in Jack and Jill.
On Friday, the film, directed by frequent Sandler collaborator Dennis Dugan, had scored the infamous zero-percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes. By Sunday the score had risen to a measly 3-percent critics rating, but either the negative reviews fell on deaf ears or audiences wanted to see what all the fuss was about: the movie opened to $26 million at the box office. Lower than usual for the actor, whose films usually open north of $30 million, but still a decent cume considering its scathing reviews.
“Jack and Jill is witless and sloppily constructed, getting by on fart gags, homeless jokes, Latino stereotypes and that old favorite, explosive chimichanga diarrhea — and no, not in an inspired Bridesmaids way,” wrote The Hollywood Reporter’s David Rooney. “Maybe there’s an audience for it, but they should be embarrassed.”
Audiences gave the film a 57% rating on Rotten Tomatoes opening weekend. Perhaps the higher reception is due in part to the stellar A-listers the film, produced by Sony Pictures, managed to pull in: Al Pacino, Regis Philbin, Johnny Depp, Shaquille O’Neal, Drew Carey, Christie Brinkley and Bruce Jenner all made cameos, while other actors on the bill include Katie Holmes, David Spade, Dana Carvey and Tim Meadows.
Whatever the reason, people are watching but few are laughing. The two critics that gave semi-positive reviews accumulated into Rotten Tomatoes’ 3-percent rating, Michael Smith of MediaMikes and John Hazelton of Screen International, were met with their own fair share of criticism by the Rotten Tomatoes online community. They received more than 150 responses between the two of them, more than any of the other 63 film critics received combined.
“Congrats to Michael A. Smith for being the worst ‘film critic’ in America. Should be locked in a padded room somewhere,” Craig C. commented on Rotten Tomatoes, after Smith became the first critic to take Jack and Jill out of the goose egg category. “Michael A. Smith…..how much money did the producers of this COLOSSAL FAILURE give you for a positive review?” Thomas D. commented. Another commenter explained: “None, he just wanted the attention.”
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