Best Blu-ray Deals
Best Blu-ray Deals, See All the Deals »
Top deals |
A rejected hockey player puts his skills to the golf course to save his grandmother's house.
For more about Happy Gilmore and the Happy Gilmore Blu-ray release, see Happy Gilmore Blu-ray Review published by Kenneth Brown on May 21, 2011 where this Blu-ray release scored 3.5 out of 5.
Starring: Adam Sandler, Christopher McDonald, Julie Bowen, Frances Bay, Carl Weathers, Allen Covert
Director: Dennis Dugan
» See full cast & crew
Happy Gilmore Blu-ray Review
"That's my puck, baby. Don't you ever touch my puck."
Reviewed by Kenneth Brown, May 21, 2011
I doubt anyone in 1987 said, "that kid on The Cosby Show? Smitty? He's gonna be a star one day!" Yet here we are, some twenty-four years later: Theo Huxtable, or rather Malcolm-Jamal Warner, is cashing Community cameo checks, the rest of the Huxtables have settled into relative seclusion, and good ol' Smitty, better known 'round the world as Adam Sandler, is one of the most successful comedian-cum-superstars on the planet. But superstardom didn't come easy. After cutting his teeth on Cosby, Sandler jostled for screentime on MTV's Remote Control, became intimately familiar with dingy back-alley comedy clubs, snagged a role in Overboard and finally caught his biggest break courtesy of Denis Miller, a five-year stint on Saturday Night Live. Even then, with a fanbase clamoring in the wings, few thought Sandler could make the transition from sketch-show alum to bankable movie star. Billy Madison didn't help much, but it did earn a semi-respectable $26 million ($37 million adjusted for inflation); enough to greenlight Happy Gilmore which, a mere year later, would almost double Madison's box-office take with $41 million ($57 million adjusted). His fans' loyalties vindicated, Sandler was officially on his way. Happy Gilmore, meanwhile, built itself a solid little fanbase that's still thriving today; one that will be eager to snatch up its Blu-ray release.
Cranking down the man-child dial from an eleven to... oh, somewhere between a seven and an eight, Sandler dons an open-faced plaid button-up and steps into the boots of Happy Gilmore, a volatile hockey player who tries his high-sticking hand at professional golf in an effort to save his childhood home from foreclosure. Happy has a mean swing, a mean knack for sinking hole-in-ones, and an even meaner attitude, and soon becomes the go-to-golfer of the common man. Tour Commissioner Doug Thompson (Dennis Dugan, Grown Ups) isn't pleased with Happy's outbursts and on-the-course antics, but the attention the temperamental upstart brings to the tour and the sport leaves him desperate to take advantage of Happy's sudden star status. Before you can say love interest, Thompson tasks PR Director Virginia Venit (Julie Bowen, Modern Family) with taming Happy's rage and making him a more family friendly sportsman. However, it's a decision that doesn't sit too well with rival golfer Shooter McGavin (Christopher McDonald, Requiem for a Dream), an arrogant tour leader who sees Happy as a threat to golf, decency and, more than anything, a chance to win a coveted gold jacket. Shooter bends and breaks the rules, attacking Happy from all angles, even going so far as to push his way into Gilmore's personal life. With the help of one-armed ex-pro Chubbs Peterson (Carl Weathers, Predator), the love of Virginia, and the support of his sweet grandmother (Frances Bay, The Middle), Happy takes aim at Shooter's dominance and the tour's top spot.
For some, Sandler's overgrown-boy schtick is like a mallet to the skull. If you're nodding your head, move on and don't look back. Happy Gilmore isn't going to leave you any less battered or bruised than the SNL castaway's other comedies. Happy isn't an easy-to-love golfer of the people, and subtlety has never really been Sandler's game of choice. (Punch Drunk Love and Reign Over Me notwithstanding.) Happy is perpetually teed off; a quirk Sandler, leaner and meaner himself, seems all too happy to tap into with every blowup, tantrum and flurry his penalty-box protagonist spits out on the golf course. I'll admit, after the sixty-eighth flareup or so, it does grow a tad tiresome. But something strange happened to me on the way to Happy's Tour: nostalgia washed over me. I was suddenly back in 1996, laughing at re-runs of early '90s SNL episodes when the series' self-proclaimed bad boys of comedy -- Sandler, Chris Farley and David Spade -- ruled Saturday nights with a sweaty fist. The same era that found SNL's bad boys launching a three-pronged assault on Hollywood. Memories poured in. I remembered coughing up soda in the theater in the middle of Billy Madison (a film that hasn't aged nearly as well as Happy Gilmore); I remembered declaring Tommy Boy the greatest comedy of all time (ah, the folly of youth); and I remembered shoving a copy of Happy Gilmore into my VCR more times than I care to admit. Most of all, I reconnected with the fondness I felt for Sandler and Happy in '96, the last official year of my childhood.
I know, I know. "Are you going to actually review the movie?" My apologies. Happy Gilmore isn't smart comedy, but it is a whole lot of fun. (Happy's fistfight with Price is Right-host Bob Barker is worth the price of admission alone.) It lumbers across the screen rather than nimbly darting from joke to joke, but Sandler and his co-stars sink their chompers into each one. It telegraphs every punch it delivers, sure. But when it lands a haymaker, look out. Sandler not only shared screenwriting duties with Tim Herlihy, he made sure that each and every line that leaves a supporting character's mouth is a soft-pitch Happy can smash out of the park. Quotable quotes abound, one-liners are brash and brutal (insofar as PG-13 barbs can be) and, having not revisited the film in more than seven years, I quickly realized quite a few scenes are permanently etched into my brain. Granted, the glow of one's senior year in high school tends to crystallize otherwise inconsequential memories, but I'm not about to deny they exist or try to scrape them out of my mind. That said, Happy Gilmore shows its age and showcases then-thirty-year-old Adam Sandler's big-screen inexperience more than his promising qualities as an actor. I doubt Gilmore will win over many newcomers either, aside from those who already have tremendous affection for Sandler and are willing to overlook the side effects of his mid-90s growing pains.
Ultimately, I feel ill-equipped to give Happy Gilmore the scorched-earth scrutiny it may very well deserve. I can't offer much insight into its shortcomings, just its personal appeal. Then again, maybe that speaks more to the film's charm than an academic analysis ever could. Happy Gilmore still makes me laugh. I couldn't ask for much more.
Happy Gilmore Blu-ray, Video Quality
I also didn't expect much from Happy Gilmore's 1080p/VC-1 encoded presentation but, at this point, I think I'm about done with expectations. Happy Gilmore looks great, particularly for a fifteen-year-old catalog comedy. Yes, the transfer is identical to its 2006 HD DVD counterpart, but there's no need to fix what isn't broken. Arthur Albert's chipper palette is bright and vivid, primaries can be tenacious and, for the most part, black levels dig deep. Faces flush a bit at times, but contrast and color saturation remain satisfying on the whole. Detail is impressive as well, even if soft shots sneak into the party. Fine textures are generally refined, edges are sharp, overall clarity is faithful to the film's original print, and every scene thoroughly outclasses its 2001 and 2005 DVD counterparts. Moreover, compression artifacting, aliasing, banding and other oddities aren't a factor, and the minor ringing and infrequent print specks-n-spots that pop up here and there are kept to a minimum and rarely detract from the proceedings. If you have fond memories of Happy Gilmore, Universal's DVD-trouncing high definition presentation will easily justify the cost of an upgrade.
Happy Gilmore Blu-ray, Audio Quality
Universal's DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround track isn't the hole-in-one its video transfer is, but only because the film's original sound design doesn't have as much to offer. Like many a '90s catalog comedy released on Blu, Happy Gilmore is a fairly front-heavy experience with little to offer in terms of enveloping sonics. LFE output is sturdy but serviceable and rear speaker activity is decent but not entirely engaging. Even so, directionality is reasonably convincing for a film of the era, dialogue is crisp and nicely prioritized, pans are smooth, low-end effects kick when necessary, and the studio's lossless efforts are commendable. Fans of the film, especially those who've been stuck with the Special Edition DVD's standard audio mix for the last six years, will be pleased.
Happy Gilmore Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
Like the 2005 Special Edition DVD and 2006 HD DVD before it, the Blu-ray release of Happy Gilmore tees up a pair of extras: 19-minutes of deleted scenes and an outtake reel. It isn't the feature-packed disc Sandler fans might be hoping for, but at least Universal didn't skip the supplements altogether and issue a barebones release.
Happy Gilmore Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
If you aren't an Adam Sandler fan, or weren't one at some point in the last two decades, Happy Gilmore isn't for you. It wears its fifteen years and Sandler-stylings on its sleeve and never apologizes for any of it. If you are a fan, Universal's Blu-ray release won't disappoint. It may not have very many special features, but its video transfer is terrific and its DTS-HD Master Audio track is true to its source. There aren't many lingering Universal HD DVD titles left to be released. So pop some popcorn, brace for a flood of nostalgia and join golf's rage-fueled man-child on his rise to the top.
Use the thumbs up and thumbs down icons to agree or disagree that the title is similar to Happy Gilmore. You can also suggest completely new similar titles to Happy Gilmore in the search box below.
Similar titles suggested by members
Happy Gilmore Blu-ray, News and Updates
• Buy Two Select Universal Blu-rays at Amazon, Get $8 Off (Expired) - May 9, 2011
Amazon is currently offering customers who purchase two select Universal Blu-ray releases $8 off their total purchase price at checkout. The deal is notable in that five of the fourteen eligible titles are upcoming releases: American Graffiti, Legend, Billy Madison, ...
• Trio of Adam Sandler Movies on Blu-ray in June - March 28, 2011
Universal Studios Home Entertainment has announced three catalog movies starring Adam Sandler for Blu-ray release on June 7: Billy Madison, Bulletproof and Happy Gilmore. All three had been released in 2007 on the defunct HD DVD format. They had come out on BD ...
Happy Gilmore Blu-ray, Forum Discussions
Happy Gilmore Blu-ray Screenshots
Back to Happy Gilmore Blu-ray »
Trending Blu-ray Movies
Trending in Theaters
This web site is not affiliated with the Blu-ray Disc Association.
All trademarks are the property of the respective trademark owners.
© 2002-2014 Blu-ray.com. All rights reserved.