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  • Widescreen 1.85:1
  • 16:9 Enhanced
  • Dual Layer ( )
  • English: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Italian: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Russian: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Commentary - English: Dolby Digital Stereo
  • Commentary - English: Dolby Digital Stereo
    English, Italian, Hebrew, Czech, Greek, Polish, Hungarian, Russian, Dutch, Arabic, English - Hearing Impaired, Italian - Hearing Impaired, Turkish, Icelandic, Croatian, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Hindi, Slovenian, Commentary - English
  • 13 Deleted scenes
  • 5 Theatrical trailer - Eight Crazy Nights, Anger Management, Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, Big Daddy, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines
  • 2 Audio commentary
  • 2 Featurette - HBO First Look Special, A Day With The Meatball
  • Photo gallery
  • Animated menus
  • Music video - The Chanukah Song Part 3
  • Dolby Digital trailer - 'City'

Adam Sandler's Eight Crazy Nights

Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Home Entertainment . R4 . COLOR . 73 mins . PG . PAL


I used to be close with a Jewish couple (but haven’t called in a while) and so I knew a bit about Chanukah, the eight ‘crazy’ nights that are the Jewish version of the end of year religious festival (I also attended their wedding and that was a learning experience too).

Anyway, that is the premise of this film, though most of it is just about the warm feelings we should have toward our fellow humans at that time of year, regardless of religious beliefs. Davey Stone is a cold adult who drinks way too much, causes the cops a lot of trouble and is one step away from prison. In court he gets one last chance to redeem himself if he’ll train under the local basketball referee Whitey as a replacement before he retires from 35 years of service. That sounds better than prison, so he goes. However, it isn’t long before Davey is a pain to this very short, disabled and genuinely nice old man. Whitey tells us the reason Davey is the way he is; on the first night of Chanukah way back when Davey was little, his parents were killed in a car crash, spoiling the event for him forever.

When his childhood sweetheart, who now hates him, has her son playing basketball, there’s some bonding and before long Davey is getting along with people and being likeable. It doesn’t stay that way, but I’ll not give anything else away for you.

"Eat that nutstrap, B-arch!"

American reviewers panned the crap outta this film, and whilst I understand what they meant regarding some gross-out humour here, they were unnecessarily cruel. Yes, it’s a different film to our usual good cheer Christmas (and Chanukah) stories, but if they bothered to look closer they would have seen the good cheer in this piece. Sandler is Sandler of course, and is even caricatured as Davey, pulling off some seriously nasty moves on Whitey and the town. But even the character doesn’t like himself, and we’re not supposed to either. That’s what the film’s about after all, the human spirit that comes to us at that time of year and how people can change.

Perhaps there are some unnecessarily graphic bodily function gags but, as an animator, this is the animator’s Holy Grail. Not many animated films or TV shows go where this one goes, and I’ll bet you the animators were having a blast. Yet, I watched this film with children in mind and there’s really nothing here kids couldn’t watch under parental supervision, deer pooping aside perhaps. Or the awful porta potty scene. I’d also be willing to bet that the kids would find it hysterical.

There are stacks of product placements throughout that you can’t miss (and after seeing this you’ll know why) which always kind of bugs me, but the companies used here may not have seen a script considering the bizarre behaviour accommodated by their corporate logos. However, try and ignore the advertisements.

All over, this film is fun with a healthy dose of the usual Adam Sandler gross-out thrown in (or up, perhaps). It isn’t Tom Green kinda gross either; because this is actually funny.


We have a faultless animation transfer here. Delivered in 1.85:1 and 16:9 enhanced for the widescreeners, this looks like it would have looked at the cinema (if it had appeared here for long). There's no film artefacts, compression issues or screen junk to jam things up and the layer change skipped by undetected. Colours are superb with a variety of palettes being used from soft washes to blaze neon. Shadow detail is naturally rich as are flesh tones and such. Faultless, like I said.


Again, the sound is perfectly transferred. The dudes at the Sony DVD Center know their stuff and this Dolby Digital Surround 5.1 package is awesome. Plenty of allover stuff with the attention to musical numbers well received. One tiny flaw I noticed in one song was that distinct shift in tone from speaking to singing voice. Like they were recorded in different places with different acoustics. However, that was incredibly brief and may be missed by most folks. In fact, maybe I imagined it, I dunno.

All the dialogue is okay mostly, but for a couple of character voices I had some trouble untangling. Sandler voices four main characters here and long time compatriot Rob Schneider is another busy voice guy. Both these dudes use their funniest funny voices, but get a little jumbly sometimes. A little thing, but there nonetheless.

Sound effects are naturally stockish, with the soundtrack being created in a studio environment, but they are usually played for laughs and they work effectively to that end.


During Chanukah, a gift is given each evening for eight nights in a row. Sounds pretty cool. So, here we have eight crazy extras!

One: The cast audio commentary sees Sandler in character(s) with long time buddy and co-writer Allen Covert (the limo driver in The Wedding Singer). Some extra gags get used here with Covert leading Sandler in most of the time, so it sounds a teensy bit staged. Still funny though.

Two: The technical audio commentary with five honchos from various animation departments. There are some interesting bits thrown in here regarding speed and problems and technical insight and such, but not a lot of humour. It's a thorough dissection of an animated feature though, for those interested.

Three: Deleted scenes are always attractive, but in this instance they’re a bit drab. Most are only in animatic form (which is like a filmed storyboard) in black and white with limited sound. There are 13 scenes all told with just a couple having under-rendered completed animation.

Four: A music video of Adam Sandler playing the Chanukah Song Part 3 live on what looks like a talkback show. It runs for 4:01 and is the song that runs over the closing credits of the film.

Five: 35 images filling out the photo gallery which is a bit of a misnomer here. Mostly background artwork, there are some concepts thrown in and they all look great.

Six: A Day With Meatball is confusing in title alone, and is a pretty thin bit following Sandler’s dog around for 1:57 to various places. The gymnasium is definitely the highlight and suits the film perfectly.

Seven: The HBO First Look Special is a 12:42 featurette that is the usual type of sell job played as filler material on cable TV. Lots of footage with some interviews with Sandler, director Seth Kearsley, Allen Covert and the executive producer.

Eight: Happy Chanukah! This is the obligatory trailer bit with some alright fare actually. We get: Eight Crazy Nights, Anger Management, Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle, Big Daddy and Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. Mostly recent but for Big Daddy, of course, but it beats blank space on the disc.

So, there's a fair whack which should keep us busy well into the New Year.


For Adam Sandler fans, this is much the same as his usual stuff with the added bonus of some undoable gags in reality being too easy in the animated realm. Perhaps not a gather-the-family-around film (what with the generation gap and all), but it has some good laughs for those not too squeamish.

There are some moments of minor caution, but really nothing the parents of 21st century kids should worry too much about. Kids will laugh more at the grossness here, and there are even some messages of tolerance and friendship delivered in a roundabout style. I won’t say ‘clean’, but definitely fun.

  • LINK: http://www.dvd.net.au/review.cgi?review_id=3151
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      And I quote...
    "I won’t say ‘clean’, but it’s definitely fun stuff. Happy Chanukah!"
    - Jules Faber
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