We couldn’t have asked for a worse film than Hubie Halloween. Adam Sandler, after giving one of the best acting performances of the last decade in Uncut Gems, returns with the most god-awful halloween movie to come out since the 2018 reboot of the Halloween franchise. Here is a recap, as brief as I can make it:
Hubert Dubois is the town fool who, every halloween, takes it upon himself to ensure the children are practicing safe halloween habits. The children and adults of Salem alike bully him relentlessly because of how weird he is.
A mental patient has escaped a nearby mental institution, and the police are on the lookout for him. A man has just moved in next to Hubie and his mother’s home, and suspiciously acts like a werewolf. On halloween night, people keep disappearing, and Hubie makes a concerted effort to find them. He finds his new neighbor mid-transformation, but later finds out that he also recently escaped from the mental institution, and that the new escapee was his roommate, and is out to look for him.
After some insanely contrived police-work and a strange conversation with Shaquille O’Neal, they discover that Hubie’s mother has been kidnapping Salem residents that bully Hubie to teach them a lesson. She attempts to burn them alive in her backyard, but the police and Hubie come to stop her. Hubie saves the day, and before they can nab his mother, she escapes into the night. One year later, Hubie is the mayor and has a lovely wife. The End.
This movie is atrocious. There is far too much plot, there is far too little substance, and it plain isn’t funny. The jokes were recycled to exhaustion even though they weren’t very good to begin with. Adam Sandler chose to use a silly voice for the entire duration of the movie, akin to The Waterboy or Billy Madison, and often makes him frustratingly difficult to understand.
The cast is one third tweenie-TV idols, one third star studded, and one third SNL veteran reunion. In general, it’s disorienting. I think the only excusable use of a celebrity cameo was the weird, sitophilic scene with Shaq and his wife’s Randy Savage sounding voice.
The werewolf plot was absolutely unnecessary, and subsequently so was the escaped mental patient plot. They could have saved us forty minutes on these contrived stakes that were underwhelming even before they turned out to amount to absolutely nothing.
Adam Sandler certainly could have done better. Riddled with references and callbacks, the movie doesn’t feel at all original, but even the gags feel foreign to the team of people who are supposed to be comedy legends. If there is a place in your heart for all the bad Adam Sandler movies out there, I can assure you that this one won’t fit.
Somebody needs to give Steven Brill a timeout– I think even he should know better than to make this movie. Comedy is supposed to surprise you, be unexpected. It is supposed to feel quick, like a rush. This movie drags on for what feels like ages, ages beyond its already absurd runtime of an hour and forty minutes.
If you are perhaps between the ages of 10 and 13, I can recommend this film to you– and even then I’d be wary. If you consider yourself an adult, I would urge you to not waste your time. Hopefully we will see another dramatic performance from Sandler in the near future, or, if that is too much to ask, another wholesome comedy that’s actually funny this time. I give Hubie Halloween a 1 out of 5.