Co-written and co-produced by its hero Adam Sandler, Hubie Halloween directed by Steven Brill is a lame comedy that rarely manages to generate a genuine moment of humor. Narrated as the story of a nerdy guy in Salem whom everyone lookdown as a fun spoiler, the movie is also as boring as its central character. Adam Sandler has a history of doing these kinds of “watch and forget comedies” and this one also belongs to that category where everything feels very familiar.
Hubie Dubois is from the city of Salem. Nobody in the city really liked him and they have always tried to bully him at every given chance. Hubie has this habit of becoming a monitor like a figure during Halloween to make sure that everyone is safe during the celebration. The party pooper nature of this self-assigned duty has obviously made him an unlikable character. But during one particular Halloween, some people go missing and Hubie finds out that a patient in the nearby mental hospital has also escaped. Hubie single-handedly trying to make sure the safety of the people is somewhat the theme of Hubie Halloween.
In the climactic part of the movie, Hubie’s mother gives a speech where she criticizes everyone for always making fun of her kid and ashamed by their own conduct the people who used to make fun of Hubie discloses their insecurities. If you have a 5 or 6-year-old kid who gets bullied by other people, this might well be a scene that can give him or her some comfort. Because the scene and it’s messaging plays out like a drama for the kids. The issue is that this isn’t precisely a kid’s film when you look at the rest of it. It is pretty much a standard Adam Sandler comedy with a lot of gimmicky wits and this bullying angle is simply used to give closure to the series of comedy they had in mind.
The lisp like thing Sandler uses to make Hubie the odd one is a bit too annoying. It doesn’t feel like he is performing someone with a speech disability. It almost feels like he is mocking them. His usual coolness is attributed to this character as well and that in a way reduces the dullness or the stuck nature of the screenplay. Apart from Sandler, no one else really gets a character that has an impact on the story to stay with you post the movie. June Squibb who plays Hubie’s mother, Julie Brown who plays his love interest, Kevin James as the sergeant, etc are all playing seemingly important characters. But if you look at it, the story could have happened even without them.
Steven Brill has made the movie in the typical holiday movie template. We get to see that wacky hero introduction, his love track, some other sidetracks for the sake of having some comedy, and everything culminating in the climax. The humor is focusing on the murmuring dialogues and some slapstick stuff. The cinematography here is pretty basic and the editing is really messed up, especially in simple conversation scenes where the tempo should have been gentle.
Hubie Halloween is a movie that stuffs in average jokes in a simple plot to make it look like a popcorn fun film. But we can see that half-hearted intent at a very early stage and thus, nothing in the content works for you. Adam Sandler has a brand of movies similar to this where you can sense similar ingredients with just themes changing and this one also goes to that list.
Hubie Halloween is a movie that stuffs in average jokes in a simple plot to make it look like a popcorn fun film.
Green: Recommended Film
Orange: Okay, Watchable, Experimental Films
Red: Not Recommended