Hippo Manchester
August 18, 2005

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Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo (PG-13)
By Amy Diaz

Rob Schneider pokes you repeatedly with a thumbtack while the pieces of the plot land on your head with dull thuds in Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo, a sequel that makes the sexcapades of Wedding Crashers look like Noel Coward.

Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo wants to be a raunchy, broad-comedy story with just enough of a heart to allow you not to feel bad about all the jokes about blacks and gays. But it left out a key component: it isn’t funny. It isn’t funny on any level. It will bore you, confuse you and have you ready to leave after only three minutes into the story but it will never never make you laugh. And lest you think this comes from someone with an allergy to lowbrow, I consider both Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle (full of pot humor, just like Deuce Bigalow) and Team America World Police (which goes way farther in terms of outrageous sex humor) two of the best movies from last year. And I was not alone in my not laughing: other people in the theater (people who chose to see this film for recreation and then paid money to do so) didn’t laugh either. For example scenes of Eddie Griffin eating French fries out of a toilet or Schneider getting covered in wine spewing forth from the neck of a woman with no larynx went on and on and on while the audience sat in silence. The effect of supposedly-wacky comedy played out to no reaction is sort of surreal — it’s like the audience has been rendered catatonic by all the unfunny.

The unfunny begins right away when we see Deuce (Schneider) quickly get back in the “man-whore” business, this time in Amsterdam. His hooking has a higher purpose — trying to flush out a serial killer who’s been felling Europe’s finest gigolos. This becomes extra urgent when his old friend TJ Hicks (Griffin) is suspected of doing the men in.  The result, of course, is a series of dates with women of varying deformities — from a hunchback to a penis-nose.

Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo feels like an Adam Sandler-sponsored work-project for his unsuccessful friends. Norm McDonald makes a cameo, as does Sandler himself. But Sandler’s part in the movie is brief and larkish, after all he’s trying to build a real career while the Schneiders of the world are still stuck in the mid-1990s, replaying horrible Saturday Night Live sketches over and over again.