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Written by Tom Brady and Rob Schneider
Directed by Luke Greenfield

Running Time: 1:22

Rated PG-13
for some crude and sexual humor.

Rob Schneider as

Colleen Haskell as

John C. McGinley as
Doug Sisk

Guy Torry as

Michael Caton as
Dr. Wilder

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The Animal is a stupid comedy. And I don't necessarily mean that in a bad way. It's just a dumb movie that has a few laughs, but is mainly a one-joke movie with a lot of smiling from Colleen Haskell. Not horrible, but not really something you need to see.

Rob Schneider stars as Marvin, a down on his luck guy who lives in a garage and just wants to be a cop. But due to his lack of athletic ability, he can't pass the obstacle course. Then one day, he takes a nosedive over a cliff in his car, and is miraculously put back together by a strange doctor (Michael Caton). The catch of course being that he was put back together using animal parts. So now Marvin is half man, half animal, and you can imagine all the funny situations that can lead to. Funny being a strong word. Also along for the ride is ex-Survivor cast mate Colleen Haskell as the love interest (and maybe more), John C. McGinley as the cop who has it out for Marvin, and Guy Torry as Marvin's black friend who is constantly the victim of reverse racism.

So as I said, The Animal is a stupid comedy, but that's not always a bad thing. It's not a gross out comedy like something from the Farrelly Brothers or Tom Green. It's a dumb movie featuring one of the leaders of the dumb comedy regime, Rob Schneider, and produced by the king of the dumb comedy, Adam Sandler. The other one of the triad in my opinion is Norm MacDonald, and wouldn't you know it, all three of them appear in this movie. Dumb comedies sometimes are actually quite funny. Take a movie like The Waterboy. Stupid movie, stupid premise, but very funny. Another movie I loved was Norm MacDonald's Dirty Work. Another dumb movie with a dumb premise, but it was funny. Then of course you have the dumb movies, with the dumb stories that just don't work.

The Animal happens to be one of those movies. It is basically a one joke movie, with Rob Schneider acting like an animal and getting into strange situations. After a while, that one joke wears thin, even in a movie that only lasts 82 minutes. None of the other characters really made up for the lack of interest. Colleen was I imagine only there to capitalize on her name recognition and her smile. All she did was smile. No matter the situation, she smiled. Even that got annoying after a while.

There were a couple of good jokes, including one throwaway line that you get to hear again after the end of the closing credits. For the most part however, the movie wasn't very entertaining after the first 20 minutes. This was just your run of the mill comedy with some sight gags, some crude humor, a supporting cast of buffoons (although the reverse racism shtick was a little different), and a beautiful woman as the love interest. The music was pretty good though. Any movie that throws in some "Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor is good with me.

So overall The Animal wasn't anything special. This is more the kind of movie you'd rent with a bunch of friends and sit around and make fun of. Nothing you need to rush out and see.

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reviewed 06/01/01

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