CHICAGO – Like the awesome Engine Who Could, the mighty Nothing Without a Company stage crafters have constructed another triumph at their new home in Berger Mansion on Chicago’s north side. “The Kid Thing” – written by Sarah Gubbins – is a terse, convincing and emotional play about fear, identity and breeding, and it is performed by its cast of five with utter authenticity. The show has a Thursday-Sunday run at the Berger North Mansion through April 15th, 2017. Click here for more details, including ticket information.
Film Review: ‘Blended’ is Lazy, Laugh-Free Catastrophe
CHICAGO – Two things save “Blended” from getting a zero star review. Number one is the still palpable chemistry between Drew Barrymore and Adam Sandler. Number two is the occasional chuckle courtesy of Wendi McClendon-Covey as Barrymore’s business partner. Otherwise this is a barren laugh-free safari through Africa that doesn’t even have the benefit of Al Pacino trampling on his prestigious career for our amusement.
“Blended” never sinks to the astonishingly awful lows of “Jack And Jill” or “That’s My Boy.” Both of those films had ideas I couldn’t believe had ever made it to the silver screen. But I won’t soon forget them, as hard as I may try. “Blended” is both painfully unfunny and bland and boring.
I feel a little sorry for Drew Barrymore’s career these days, because the closest thing she’s got to a dependable leading man is Adam Sandler. He’s certainly no Tom Hanks. Sandler, as usual, is clad in outfits that even George Constanza would find to be the epitome of apathy and hopelessness. Sweat pants are almost considered formal gear. This is Sandler and Barrymore’s third film together and you can see the reasons why. When they’re together her flightiness comes off as charming rather than insipid. And his overgrown man-child takes a few steps towards maturity even as Sandler himself proceeds firmly into middle-age. “Blended” also re-teams them with their “Wedding Singer” director Frank Coraci, but the best they can manage is to make the film blandly awful instead of an audience endurance test.
Lauren (Drew Barrymore) and Jim (Adam Sandler) in ‘Blended’
Photo credit: Warner Bros.