June 3 - 9, 2005• Vol. 26 - No. 22

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The Longest Yard
—Perhaps a Foot, or Even a Mile

by The Maven and The Blonde
Film Columnists



For those who didn't see the original 1974 film of the same name, the hero of The Longest Yard is Paul Crewe, played by Adam Sandler (50 First Dates and Waterboy). He was an MVP quarterback who was booted from the NFL for his part in a point-shaving scandal. After a drunken joyride ending in a multi-car crash in his girlfriend’s Bentley, (now obviously his ex-girlfriend), he is arrested and lands in a scary Texas prison. Poor Paul has to endure some serious abuse from inmates and prison guards. Warden Hazen, portrayed by James Cromwell (Babe and Sum of All Fears) convinces Paul (with a touch of blackmail) to form a football team of inmates to play a team of guards. All good heroes need a sidekick, so enter Chris Rock (Dogma and Heaven Can Wait) as Caretaker, a wise-cracking enterprising con. Helping Paul and Caretaker is Coach Nate Scarborough, starring the original 1974 Paul Crewe, Burt Reynolds (Heat and Best Friends). Wrestling fans will be happy to see Bill Goldberg, Kevin Nash and Steve Austin. Football fans will be entertained by Bill Romanowski and Brian Bosworth. Rap fans will see Nelly, playing the role of Megget, a con who makes for a really good running back. Cloris Leachman (“The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and Spanglish) plays Lynette, the Warden’s oversexed secretary. Peter Segal not only directed this film with Adam Sandler, but they also worked together on 50 First Dates and Anger Management. Go and see just how LONG a YARD can be dragged out!

The Blonde: I want you movie fans to know that, just to get through writing this review, I am eating a bucket of popcorn as bribery to myself! This film was as hard to watch as a losing Dolphins season! Having said that, The Longest Yard was like the original Longest Yard (only NOT AS GOOD) meets Any Given Sunday meets Meet the Titans meets Friday Night Lights meets all the other football movies, only NOT AS GOOD! I did like the very first scene with the cops, because it's what we all would just love to do, but have enough sense to 'NOT'! Maven, what do you think of the Paris Hilton commercial for Carl's Hamburgers and all the hoopla surrounding it? I don't think it was THAT over the TOP and BOTTOM literally… she did look great! I bet they WILL sell more burgers!

The Maven: I like it AND the controversy surrounding it! Back to the film, since there will always be comparisons between remakes, I may as well add one or two of my own. Burt Reynolds was perfectly cast in the original as Paul Crewe, Adam Sandler is NOT! Having said that, I still enjoyed Adam in this film, just don't compare him to Burt. Adam's Paul is not as gritty as Burt's was. No matter how many Adam Sandler movies I see, I can never forget it’s Adam on the screen. His personality always shows through. For me, that's not a bad thing; I like him.

The Blonde: About Adam Sandler…I like him, I REALLY, REALLY LIKE HIM, but, you need to get real here, Adam. He needs to break away from the same EXACT formula he follows in every single film he does. Sander ALWAYS plays the poor, likeable, underdog who overcomes ALL the impossible odds and wins in the end for a happy ending with a big bow on the top! It kind of makes you more nauseous than a bucket of popcorn with extra butter! Speaking of nauseous, pregnant Britney Spears is having a boy!

Review continued on bottom

The Maven: I watched the Britney and Kevin show on MTV and I was SO NOT impressed! She's an absolute fool to have made this “reality” show and she and Kevin are NO Nick and Jessica! I think the more people see of Kevin the more she will look like a bimbo! I'm just plain embarrassed for her!

The Blonde: More than her marrying a guy for 10 minutes? I don't want to be mean, (okay, maybe I do) but didn't Burt Reynolds look like a cross between Billy Bob Thornton, Sean Connery and Joan Rivers? Maybe they all use the same plastic surgeon or something! Speaking of things that aren't real, Maven, have you heard that Viagra may cause BLINDNESS! Does this mean that our mothers could be right about sex after all! I hate when our mothers are right, especially about sex!

The Maven: I'm not touching that one!

The Blonde: Good, then you WON'T GO BLIND! I was surprised to see Courtney Cox Arquette take such a small role in a film!

The Maven: Well, the role may have been small, but we got to see A LOT, A LOT of her! If you don't like Adam Sandler or Chris Rock, you probably won't enjoy this film. The football scenes are good, but I'm sticking with the original. I rate this movie a C- for crunchingly realistic tackles.

The Blonde: I was in two chairs today that I wasn't happy about sitting in. The first was sitting in the dentist’s chair getting a root canal. The other was sitting through The Longest Yard! I don't know which one I disliked more!  If you happen to be a football-aholic who is depressed and desperately missing the football season, and perhaps even drunk, than you might just enjoy this film. As for the rest of us, (and I like football as much as the next blonde) you can really throw a touchdown PASS on this one. Go play Madden video football instead!  I rate The Longest Yard (which seems more like a mile) a D for DEFEND yourself and don't go! For your snacks, I suggest some beer, peanuts, pizza and pretzels like you do at home, watching Sunday football games!  KICKOFF!
1. After landing in prison, former pro quarterback Paul Crewe (Adam Sandler, right) calls upon coach Nate Scarborough (Burt Reynolds, center) and Caretaker (Chris Rock, left) to help him field a football team of inmates to take on the guards in a bone-crushing showdown where anything goes in the comedy The Longest Yard
Photo by Tracy Bennett

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