Hubie Halloween Movie Review: Yet another Adam Sandler comedy that is nonsensical, silly and funny
Although a number of standalone scenes do work like a charm, and the anti-bullying stance is on point, the overall feel of Hubie Halloween is one of deja vu
Adam Sandler films are a genre in itself. Barring an exceptional exception like Uncut Gems, most of Sandler’s films are like those occasional weekend get-togethers we have with extended families. We get the fun uncles, pesky cousins, nosy grandparents, and other random relatives having oodles of fun and ribbing on each other. Just like how the humour in these get-togethers aren’t always good-natured and many a time border on the offensive and problematic. Similarly, Sandler’s films too are riddled with such humour that people get only when they are accustomed to the Sandler genre. Hubie Halloween is one such film.
Sandler plays the titular character who is a perennially scared person living with his mother in Salem. Known for its ‘witch history’, the town celebrates Halloween with a maniacal excitement, and Hubie takes it upon himself to ensure the festivities are safe and sound for everyone. But, he is seen as the village idiot, and Sandler gets to play yet another version of a simpleton with a heart of gold. Throw in a werewolf, an inmate who escaped from an asylum, a kidnapping drama, a couple of unlikely romances, and never-ending gags revolving around farts and projectile vomiting, we have Hubie Halloween.
However, the central premise of Hubie Halloween, a story of how Hubie finds his inner repository of bravery, takes a heartwarming anti-bullying stance that is surprisingly effective. We see Sandler regulars like Maya Rudolph, Rob Schneider, Kevin James, and Steve Buscemi having fun in the limited scope they are provided. Almost every character except Julie Bowen’s Violet Valentine and her kids exist in this world only to bully Hubie. These gags do get repetitive after a point, but Sandler’s antics keep us engaged. Be him escaping from his bullies, using his homemade multipurpose thermos flask, and acing the “deer-in-the-headlights” look whenever he is scared out of his wits, the entire film is ably shouldered by Sandler.
Although a number of such standalone scenes do work like a charm, and the anti-bullying stance is on point, the overall feel of Hubie Halloween is one of deja vu. We have already seen Sandler/Rudolph/James/Buscemi/Schneider do this time and again in multiple Happy Madison Productions. We have seen such similar arcs of redemption in Sandler’s films. We have seen such similar “happily ever afters” after extremely chaotic narratives in quite a number of these films.
But cliches… just like Sandler’s films… exist for a reason… They work.