Director: Robert Smigel
Netflix has released a film in which Jews are portrayed as poor. That’s it, I’ve seen it all!
The film is about Kenny (Adam Sandler) preparing a wedding for his daughter, who is marrying a son of a wealthy black doctor Kirby (Chris Rock). Since Kenny feels less worthy from his future in-law, he tries to pay everything on his own. But, as he can’t afford it, the film ends up being a comedy in which the wedding is falling apart.
The hotel is an absolute dumb. Kenny booked a room for the groom’s father and this was supposed to be an executive room. As it turns out, it looks everything but executive. Kenny asks the owner to improve the room by putting a name of some president to the executive room and add some hi-tech. Thus, a black millionaire doctor ends up with Thomas Jefferson executive room!!! In other words, a president who fought against slavery but who also owned slaves and thought they should be removed from the US after being set free. Slavery was to be fought through emancipation and not instant abolition, and thus a consequence of his actions was a boost in slavery and Virginia’s best product were slaves. In addition, hi-tech gets added to the room, so a millionaire doctor gets no more no less, but a toaster!
The film is arguably funny. It is even funnier for those of us well familiarised with stereotypes of Jews as neurotic and Jewish families as massive and overwhelming. While I sometimes get frustrated with the way this neuroticism of Jews is portrayed, this was not the case in this film. I thought it was hilarious.
Naturally, some typical stereotypes emerged but these were again portrayed in a nice way which makes fun of stereotypes but also Jews in general, i.e. an uncle who smuggles stuff and has ‘contacts’ to help find cheap booze, which naturally turns out to be a catastrophe. This immediately reminded me of Howard from the Big Bang theory and his contact Eddie Crispo in the black market, who can help selling the ring from a film, guys found accidentally in one flee market.
I suppose it helped that the writer of this film was Adam Sandler himself, who understands the Jewish humour and jokes about Jews, and Jewish families in particular.
While Week Of has received some criticism, with critics saying Adam Sandler can do better, and while we can agree he can, I still thought this film was fantastic. It really made me laugh, and I was not annoyed with Jewish representation. Not once. I actually thought it was quite good to see Jews portrayed as poor, as opposed to the massive amount of stereotypical portrayal of Jews as rich and influential, which does nothing but fuel ancient anti-Semitism. Some critics have said the film can be half ignored while doing the dishes (see here), and while I appreciate this may be the case for someone not familiar with the Jewish world, I personally loved it.
Thank you for reading.