12 Films To Watch Instead of JACK AND JILL

Hollywood’s done it again; they’ve churned out another turd of a movie that will make tons of money off of pre-pubescant boys. Poor Adam Sandler. Do you think it was for the paycheck, or do you think he’s misplaced his ego? His comedic roles have been dwindling, the 90s are a thing of the past, and gone are the days of Happy Gilmore and Billy Madison. The man is playing second fiddle to the like of Jonah Hill and Seth Rogen. But Sandler has proven he can do more than just act like a retarded man-child in films like Funny People and Punch Drunk Love. Why? Why has this happened?

I’m not such a masochist that I want to subject myself to an hour and a half of a female and a male Adam Sandler man-child as twin siblings in Jack and Jill. I don’t think I have ever seen anything as unfunny as drag-troll Sandler being launched out of a pool on a jet ski. For those of you who agree with my stance, here are 12 films you should watch instead.

1.) PSYCHO (1960)

Anthony Perkins plays the iconic Norma Bates and his own mum! Janet Leigh has stolen a lot of money from her job and is on the run. After driving as far as she can, she opts to hide out in a secluded motel. Bad choice: she’s the only guest, the owner is a mother-loving Freudian mess, and his mother is a serial killer. As I’m sure you’ve already seen this, or have had it spoiled previously, he’s not really playing two separate roles, but the character does think he is. I guess what’s really important is that, aside from the tame and tacked on resolution of the film, this is one of Hitchcock’s finest, influencing almost every horror filmmaker to follow. Also, the charming Anthony Perkins in drag is a good reason to watch anything. -MK

2.) DEAD AGAIN (1991)

After attempting to insinuate himself as the new Lawrence Olivier via Shakespeare, but before he ponced his way through Frankenstein, Kenneth Branagh directed this highly theatrical take on reincarnation, fate, romance, and, uh, Wayne Knight. Branagh and wife Emma Thompson star in dual roles set fifty years apart, recruiting hypnotist Derek Jacobi to help them untangle the contemporary Thompson’s visions of her former(?) self. Dead Again is an odd mix of noir, mystery, science fiction, and suspense, that actually clicks quite nicely, assuming you can buy into Branagh as a hardscrabble American PI. Which is still an easier sell than some of his early scenes as a “teenager” in Frankenstein. Oof. -Simon Howell, SoundonSight.org

3.) ADAPTATION (2002)

What’s better than a pudgy, balding, sweaty Nicolas Cage? TWO OF THEM! In a 114 minute mind-fuck where reality and fiction weave themselves into haunting complexity, Nicolas Cage plays pudgy, sweaty, balding and self loathing Charlie Kaufman, AND pudgy, sweaty, balding and irritatingly confident twin brother Donald. Unlike most films, where rambling plots meander through bland points until peaking in a (usually) uninteresting climax, Adaptation grabs you about 2 seconds in, where immediately after the opening credits, you learn that the writers of the film are the writers in the film, writing a movie about a book on which the film itself is based. – Greg

4.) SISTERS (1973)

In 1973, Brian De Palma took a break from his quirky comedies to create the first of many Hitchockian thrillers, “Sisters.” Here he gets the opportunity to showcase the talents of Margot Kidder in a dual role as separated siamese twins. De Palma uses his signature split screen to wonderfully creepy effect. The music in the film adds yet another layer of excellence, utilizing frequent Hitchcock collaborator Bernard Herrman. If you leave the film with nothing else, it will be memories of the score. But if you enjoy lurid thrillers, you are in for much more. – Warren Chan

5.) THE AUSTIN POWERS TRILOGY

The Austin Powers trilogy is a set of films about a man (Mike Meyers) who is increasingly unable to share the spotlight with anyone else in a movie. As the series progresses he takes on an increasing amount of lead roles, each less compelling than the last. It is nonetheless captivating; a tale of narcissism that starts off with a chuckle and ends in tears. Despite its crude exterior, it is a character piece that takes multiple viewings on cheap cable to properly digest and understand and appreciate. Meanwhile, Adam Sandler in Jack and Jill is just embarrassing and little else, unworthy of any worthwhile analysis or even proper scorn. – Arien Russell

6.) MRS. DOUBTFIRE (1993)
“Family values” take on a new meaning in Mrs. Doubtfire, starring Robin Williams as the title role. Daniel Hillard (Robin Williams) is separated from his children due to a crumbling marriage with his wife (Sally Field). In an attempt to remedy his failures as a husband and a father, Hillard takes on the trans-Atlantic and trans-gendered persona of Mrs. Doubtfire, a British nanny hired to look after the Hillard children. Mrs. Doubtfire is a wonderfully heart-warming and hilarious film from the 90s that is rife with the seeds of postmodern, post-Reagan, and post-feminist discontent. In spite of its strangeness, Mrs. Doubtfire is ultimately undoubtedly likeable, as the star studded cast of characters (Sally Field, Pierce Brosnan, Harvey Fierstein) can attest to. The film itself seems to follow suit. – Sabrina S.

7.) FROM DUSK TILL DAWN (1996)

One of the first of many collaborations between contemporary independent film icons, Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez, From Dusk Till Dawn also gives the legendary Cheech Marin the chance to play not just two, but three characters. We first meet Cheech as a no-nonsense border patrol worker as stars George Clooney and Quentin Tarantino smuggle themselves into Mexico in an RV driven by Harvey Keitel. Shortly thereafter, Cheech appears as an all-nonsense carnival style barker for a seedy bar for bikers and truckers, the Titty Twister. This is where the (vampire) shit hits the fan, and the story reins almost visibly changes hands from Tarantino to Rodriguez. Cheech makes a final appearance toward the end, as the man Clooney and Tarantino’s characters were supposed to meet at the bar before the undead residents started eating the patrons. -Warren Chan

8.) BOWFINGER (1999)

I guess Eddie Murphy is the king of multiple roles. I think we can comfortably agree he mastered it in Coming To America, but this under-appreciated gem, directed by Frank Oz, is a great example of Murphy’s flexibility too. Steve Martin plays hack director Robert Bowfinger who is convinced his script is going to be the next big thing. All he needs is a star. Unable to convince movie star Kit Ramsey (Eddie Murphy) to act in the film, he begins making the movie, starring Kit, without the actor’s knowledge. Things are going hysterically, until Bowfinger realizes there’s no way to finish the movie without someone who looks exactly like Kit filling in the dialogue… enter Kit’s unbelievably geeky identical twin brother, also played by Murphy. It’s a silly film, but it’s really fun. Martin and Murphy are both comedic legends, and their parodies of egotistical Hollywood folk are actually charming. - MK

9.) DEAD RINGERS (1988)

Twin gynecologists played by Jeremy Irons and Jeremy Irons star in this disturbing David Cronenberg film. Elliot and Beverly are so hard to tell apart, they begin trading lives to experience a frightening freedom of identity with the women they treat and sleep with. It’s an evil twin fantasy. Fixated on vaginal deformity and mutant women, this visceral psychological horror chronicles the twins’ descent into madness, substance, and obsession. Irons and Cronenberg are each at the top of their games, developing a partnership that demonstrates their mutual ability to transform eeriness into an art form. - MK

10.) KIND HEARTS AND CORONETS (1949)

Alec Guinness beat Eddie Murphy to the punch in playing an entire family in this film. Dennis Price is the protagonist of the film, Louis, who has vowed to murder everyone standing in the way of his Dukedom. And all of those everyone are Alec Guinness! Guinness gets the chance to die over and over again, each time as a different member of the aristocratic D’Ascoyne family. Alec Guinness is a phenomenal actor and a superb comedian, and director and screenwriter Robert Hamer provides great material and impressive technical finesse. It is Bristish black comedy of the finest variety, a giddy class satire, and a quintessential Ealing film. - MK

11.) SLIME CITY (1988)

“The grindhouses were overrated! They stank of cat urine and bum piss. Winos would just sit in there all day, drinking and peeing, drinking and peeing.” - Slime City director Greg Lamberson

Most fans of the “grindhouse movie” never visited a movie theater on 42nd street in the 70s or 80s, yet they all seem to be an expert on grindhouse films. Too bad grindhouse films are a myth. There is no single type of movie that is a real “grindhouse movie,” but there are a few films that captured the sleazy side of 42nd street during that infamous time. One of those films is Slime City. Slime City is exactly what you think it is: a movie about slime, indestructible brains, and effeminate guys with yogurt. It’s a cult film in its truest form. Like most independent horror films of this nature, Slime City was very low budget. Unlike pretentious comedians like Eddie Murphy or Ben Stiller, actress Mary Huner didn’t play two characters because she was full of herself, she played two because the other actress flaked, and the budget was too limited to recast. Huner, in a huge curly black wig, is so good in her second role that many don’t even realize it’s the same actress. – WIL Keiper, HorrorYearbook.com

12.) ANY MONTY PYTHON MOVIE

Talk about men in drag. Claiming Monty Python to be one of the most innovative, intelligent, and funniest sketch comedy troupes ever is no stretch of the imagination. And when they channeled that into film, it was equally as brilliant, hilarious, and even more artistic. Monty Python’s Life of Brian, The Holy Grail, and Meaning of Life lampooned just about everything, each with a full ensemble cast, most of whom were played by the members of the troupe. They traded leads, supporting roles, and bit parts, of all genders, sizes, and accents. Referring to them as talented does not nearly do justice to their brilliance. - MK

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