Eight Crazy Nights (2002)

Eight Crazy Nights performs an important service by virtue of its 12% Freshness Rating, which establishes a much needed margin of error on the Tomatometer (turns out it's 12%). Upon finishing this movie, the very idea that someone out there could conceivably have liked it is sickening. This is, without a doubt, the worst Adam Sandler movie either of us have ever seen. Think about that for a minute.

The film is an utter mess. Worse still, it seems to think it's actually funny, charming, subversive, and touching, while offering absolutely nothing of value. The jokes, often punctuated by the narrator restating the obvious intent, come off as mean-spirited and pointless. The movie's premise is somewhat similar to Bad Santa's, but it misses its mark to a degree that's almost incredible to behold. Not only is it painfully clear that the producers have never made an animated film before, we found ourselves wondering if they'd ever actually seen one. The timing was so far off, it sometimes felt like they wanted the audience to walk out.

The tone was just as broken. The movie involved heavy drinking, swearing, sexual innuendo, and fecal matter, making it entirely inappropriate for anyone under the age of thirteen. But the humor and moral were so stupid as to annoy anyone over the age of five or six. The remaining demographic represents the entire audience this movie had to work with.

The movie was apparently made to offer a Jewish alternative to the scores of Christmas specials and movies out there. After Sandler's "Hanukkah Song" met with considerable success on Saturday Night Live, he tried to repeat the trick with an animated movie. However, for a Hannukah movie, there's a notable absence of Hannukah. Technically, it takes place over the holiday and a few of the characters are Jewish, but it never comes up in a way that seems remotely significant. Ultimately, Eight Crazy Nights feels closer to a spin on A Christmas Carol than anything else.

The weird thing about Eight Crazy Nights is that there's no real reason it was animated. Most of the "action" is grounded enough to have been shot with actors. The end result would still have been bad, but watching the actors ham it up would have been more interesting than seeing poorly animated versions of identifiable actors recite their lines with limited expression.

Sure, they couldn't have exaggerated two of the more absurd characters as much in live action, but that really would have been an improvement: Whitey and Eleanore Duvall are two characters any world would be better off without.

Boring, obnoxious, and idiotic, there's not a single redeeming factor in Eight Crazy Nights. I can only be grateful that no one with one iota of talent seems to have been involved with this movie, as that fact alone saves Eight Crazy Nights from having been a waste of talent.

This is beyond bad. Without re-watching Casper's Haunted Christmas, we couldn't reach a consensus on whether this could actually be the single worst holiday movie we've ever seen, but it's certainly in the running.

However, I can say without hesitation that I'd rather watch the Star Wars Holiday Special three times in a row than sit through this again once.

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