Tonawanda News

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December 3, 2012

CRIB NOTES: Who knew Kevin James could be so influential?

Tonawanda News — Having spent several years as this publication’s arts critic, I’ve developed what some might call a selective eye for movies.

That is to say, I am picky.

I abhor most films that are formulaic, which might preclude me from 90 percent of what’s produced. In many cases, I can’t even fathom why such tripe is ever produced.

Take “Here Comes the Boom.” This Kevin James vehicle is so paint-by-numbers I guarantee you will deduce the ending just by knowing he’s a teacher who becomes an MMA fighter to raise money for his school.

So imagine my joy when Penny opted to go see this movie on a recent father-daughter afternoon. She picked it over some animated film and I didn’t have the heart to tell her I already knew how it ended. So in we went.

As it turns out, I was right about the ending. I also discovered why so many themes are repeated ad nauseum — because there are audiences, sometimes new audiences, that will always be receptive to the same old, same old.

And that might not be such a bad thing.

Penny had a bit of trouble following the plot early on, but quickly enough she was full of life in anticipation of the next scene and just as full of questions.

“Daddy, is he going to win?”

“Daddy, doesn’t he know fighting is bad?”

“Daddy, do you think his kids will like him for doing this?”

“Daddy, is it just me, or is this worse than ‘I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry?’ “

OK, I made that last one up. But nonetheless, Penny was completely into this movie. And that made me get into it, even when I knew precisely what that wacky Kevin James was going to do next.

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