The Nerds Strike Back
The Benchwarmers
Review by Ross Anthony

Oh, I laughed so hard I cried. There were tears streaming down the sides of my face. And just when another film like this might have fizzled out, Benchwarmers redirects its aim from the funny bone to the heart. Then I cried tears of sweetness. I can be such a big baby.

Napoleon Dynamite’s Jon Heder is a wise choice for lead nerd. He’s rock solid funny and will no doubt bring with him a large devoted fan base. David Spade is good, and his scary haircut gets a lot of mileage. Rob Schneider plays the straight man. Jon Lovitz is an excellent cast for the billionaire father of a nerd. Reggie Jackson even makes a cameo.

It’s a baseball, apple pie encrusted revenge of the nerds. This film is 100% silly stupid. If you don’t like fart jokes, don’t go see it. But, as films in this genre go, it’s packed high with funny and warmly with heart.

I liked it all, every bit of it, save for these two exceptions: 1) A grown man sliding into home base to cremate a 12 year old – not funny. Not necessary. 2) Nerds learning to swing a bat by playing mailbox baseball. A little bit funny. Not necessary. Counter to the theme. IE Guys who think they’re tough – do that. Nerds have more respect for other people’s property (and important mail). Would have been much funnier if the nerds learned by hitting piñatas. (Lots of places to go with that). Or even the “Star Wars” method with that little ball floating around.

I’m disappointed in the film for failing in these 2 areas. But fortunately, the film succeeds on the whole. Funniest film I’ve seen in a while. (My fellow critics seem to not like this genre. You shouldn’t listen to me when I rant on horror films – because I don’t like horror films. And you probably shouldn't listen to critics who don't like this kind of humor when they review this kind of film.)

This film screened at a Krikorian Theatre.

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  • The Benchwarmers. Copyright © 2006.
  • Starring Rob Schneider, David Spade, Jon Heder, Jon Lovitz, Craig Kilborn, Molly Sims, Tim Meadows, Nick Swardson.
  • Directed by Dennis Dugan.
  • Screenplay by Allen Covert, Nick Swardson.
  • Produced by Adam Sandler, Jack Giarraputo at Columbia/Revolution/HappyMadison.

Grade..........................A (3.5/4)


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Copyright © 1998-2016 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at HollywoodReportCard.com, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: www.RossAnthony.com or call 1-800-767-7186. Check out his other sites too: Author*Illustrator*Speaker, Motobookothon 2009, M9, Write Triangle, TwT. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.


Last Modified: Saturday, 16-Sep-2006 08:18:59 PDT