It was very refreshing to see that Adam Sandler was playing a different character than his usual goofball type. He was sporting goofy hair but besides that I think the character was original and down to earth in a very caring kind of way. This movie was done beautifully and it truly succeeded in showing the struggle of two cultures trying to come together. Spanglish explored many aspects of the inner workings of the social melting that a growing Latino population in the US is going through. While the culture focused as its title suggest the fusing of Spanish and English, it does a lot more. Most importantly and where the movie really shined was in showing that while two cultures can be worlds a part, the basic core values of love and respect are beyond language barriers.
The movie was written by James L. Brooks who did an spectacular job at entertaining while opening a little window to the character’s life and idiosyncrasies. He is a well known producer of both TV and movies, from the Simpsons, which btw are going to step into the big screen on 2008, to movies like As Good as It Gets and Jerry Maguire. I say the guy has a good sense of comedy.
The cast did an excellent job all around. I cannot think of any of the characters that lacked in any way, if anything they all did a job that helped each other’s performances. Paz Vega played the struggling immigrant and overprotective Hispanic mother convincible. Tea Leoni and her neurotic flare was hilarious, she made you almost want to yell at the screen “would you shut up already.” Shelbie Bruce who played Christina, not dominated both languages but in a very difficult scene where she had to be the interpreter of no only words but emotions in a serious exchange between Sandler and Vega. It was awesome to see such a young child do a very difficult scene seem not just credible but natural… what is more important the scene cracked me up.
This movie is for everyone, and it is a very good family movie with messages in tolerance, love and unity. Go rent it and laugh in both Spanish and English.