You Don't Mess With the Zohan | Screen | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

You Don't Mess With the Zohan

An Israeli anti-terrorist agent becomes hairdresser: Yes, it's a comedy.

If you've never seen an Adam Sandler movie before, you might chuckle once or twice, particularly if your tastes run to the low-brow. For those of us who have endured the entire Sandler oeuvre, Zohan will likely inspired this puzzler: How can somebody with so little talent bank so much money making the same film over and over? Cue Sandler's go-to character, a funny-voiced man-child, here Zohan, an Israeli anti-terrorist agent who just wants to cut hair and make life "silky smooth." Per the formula, add an impossibly gorgeous love interest (Emmanuelle Chriqui); a cartoon villain (John Turturro as The Phantom, an Arab terrorist); endlessly repeated jokes about hairy crotches, disco and sex-starved old ladies; a dozen, cheaply played ethnic stereotypes; a supporting role for Sandler's deeply unfunny best bud Rob Schneider; ring announcer Mike "Let's get ready to ruuuuummmmbbbblllle" Buffer, in his first dramatic role; and, as Razzie-ready bonus, the gloriously wooden Mariah Carey, who can't even play herself. Zohan is a mostly lazy Sandler vanity project meant to impress us with its wacky jabs at Arab-Israeli relations, and directed, like many of its antecedents, by Dennis Dugan: Attend at your own risk. (AH) [capsule review]

Ephemeral art made at Chalk Fest
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Ephemeral art made at Chalk Fest

By Pam Smith