Fast-Paised review: 'I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry'

Larry (Kevin James) lacks a partner to name as a life insurance beneficiary after his wife's death, so fellow firefighter Chuck (Adam Sandler) does what any good friend would do: he agrees to marry his pal. That causes some problems when Chuck falls for the pair's attorney (Jessica Biel, as vapid as a Victoria's Secret mannequin).

Big question: Is "Chuck and Larry" striking a blow for or against the treatment of gays?

Skip it: As ironic as a story about racial tolerance written by former "Seinfeld" star Michael Richards, "Chuck and Larry" tries to end in support of gays after cracking jokes at their expense for nearly two hours. Somehow, that also leaves time to insult Asians, objectify women and chastise overweight people, including a rescue from a burning building that's delayed just so Chuck can call some poor soul a fatty.

Catch it: For two new members of the "Don't quit your day job" club: singer Dave Matthews, who's given zero lines as a gay clothing store employee, and ESPN's Dan Patrick as a gay-bashing cop. Wait, Patrick did just quit his day job. Oops!

Bottom line: Very homophobic and outdated enough to treat AIDS as a crisis of gay men only, "Chuck and Larry" presents homosexuals as if they're oversexed aliens who are excessively feminine and perpetually energetic. It's a big, flamboyant cartwheel backwards for gay rights.

Bonus: Not only does the flick deliver great jokes about dropping the soap and "flaming" firefighters, it's got lots of scenes with Rob Schneider, David Spade and a cameo by Lance Bass. Nothing shows the gay community you're fighting to make things better like appearing in a movie featuring the expression, "Balls and wieners, all the way."

Matt Pais is the metromix movies producer.

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'I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry'

Directed by Dennis Dugan; screenplay by Barry Fanaro, Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor; photographed by Dean Semler; edited by Jeff Gourson; music by Rupert Gregson-Williams; production design by Perry Andelin Blake; produced by Jack Giarraputo, Tom Shadyac, Michael Bostick and Adam Sandler. A Universal release; opens Friday. Running time: 1:55. MPAA rating: PG-13 (for crude sexual content throughout, nudity, language and drug references).

Chuck Levine - Adam Sandler

Larry Valentine - Kevin James

Alex McDonough - Jessica Biel

Duncan - Ving Rhames

Capt. Tucker - Dan Aykroyd

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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