Rob Schneider – stand-up comedian

May 30, 2017 by  
Filed under Interviews

For an actor who has starred in movies where his characters have to dress in a big diaper and baby bonnet (“Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo”) or try to hump a goat (“The Animal”), comedian Rob Schneider can be a pretty serious guy—especially if politics gets into the conversation.

While movie roles and voice work continue to be his go-to gigs (friend Adam Sandler still casts him in his projects), Schneider found a new voice on stage a few years after he returned to stand-up comedy in 2010. Instead of rehashing stories about his time on the set of “The Waterboy,” Schneider, who also stars in his own Netflix series “Real Rob,” started taking on some significant issues and has tried to give them his own humorous spin.

“I talk about what’s going on in the world,” Schneider, 53, told me in a phone interview. “The way I approach politics is very different. Half of the act is me talking about what is happening in America right now and what I think about it.”

Schneider will be performing at the Improv Comedy Club inside Rivercenter Mall from May 26-28, and will also be at the Alamo City Comic Con on those same days.

Away from the stage, Schneider has ventured into some polarizing topics. He is an outspoken critic of childhood vaccinations and during our interview called California governor Jerry Brown a “dipshit” for signing a new law that eliminates personal and religious belief exemptions on vaccinations.

“The Democrats are the party to make fun of right now,” Schneider said. “But I make fun of [Donald] Trump, too. I think you have to hit both sides.”

During his stand-up show, Schneider, who considers himself more of a conservative, promises to talk about everything from the attack on freedom of speech to the minimum wage hike to what’s going on in the White House.

“I don’t want to force my opinion on people, but I think you have to challenge them and get them to laugh at the same time,” Schneider said. “I don’t want to call myself a contrarian, but I like to swim against the tide. Hitting things that are closer to the bone is more interesting than avoiding it.”

Norm of the North

January 15, 2016 by  
Filed under Kiko, Reviews

Starring: Rob Schneider, Heather Graham, Ken Jeong
Directed by: Trevor Wall (debut)
Written by: Daniel Altiere (debut), Steven Altiere (debut) and Malcolm T. Goldman (debut)

If you’re one of the many parents who will get coerced into taking your little one(s) to watch “Norm of the North” (or even worse, buying it when it hits DVD so your indiscriminate child can watch it on a loop for a month before tiring of it), someone should give you an award for your endurance for pain. It’s only January, but “Norm of the North” just might end up being the worst animated film to come out of 2016.

Originally slated to get dumped straight to DVD, “Norm” stars actor Rob Schneider (“The Ridiculous Six”) as the title character, a hero polar bear who sets off to stop a developer (Ken Jeong) from building condos in the Arctic and pushing Norm and his fellow polar bears away from their habitat.

Even delivering a message on a child’s level about global warming and the importance of taking care of the environment is still a heavy handed one. Screenwriters Daniel and Steven Altiere never find a way to cater to youngsters whose only interest will probably be to cheer for the twerking polar bear shaking his ass to pop music. This is the type of kid film that dumbs down every element of the story. Who cares what cause Norm is fighting for as long as there are half a dozen fart jokes thrown in for good measure, right?

Aside from the weak environmental message, “Norm of the North” is amateurish animation. Developed by Splash Entertainment, a TV animation studio based in California, and Assemblage Entertainment, an animated studio based in Mumbai, India, “Norm” is rendered by animators with no imagination, sense of humor, or skill that could compete with the likes of Pixar, DreamWorks, Disney, Nickelodeon, Warner Bros., Laika, or any of the top animation companies working today. The characters’ designs are clunky and their personalities are highly annoying. What’s more annoying is this excuse for a script. Who the hell is stupid enough to move into a condo built in the Arctic, anyway? Hopefully everyone involved with “Norm of the North” will also find their way to the polar region and fall into an ice fishing hole before they realize how fast and cheap they can make a sequel.

Grown Ups

June 25, 2010 by  
Filed under Reviews

Starring: Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Chris Rock
Directed by: Dennis Dugan (“You Don’t’ Mess with the Zohan”)
Written by: Adam Sandler (“You Don’t’ Mess with the Zohan”) and Fred Wolf (“Strange Wilderness”)
 
Adam Sandler’s reputation may proceed him as an actor, comedian, and screenwriter, but it’s probably time we refer to him differently now that his career seems to be on autopilot. Meet Adam Sandler the humanitarian. Since first forming Happy Madison Production Company in 1999, Sandler has single handedly kept his closest – and least talented – friends employed for a good part of the last decade.
 
For those of you who thought “Paul Blart: Mall Cop,” “Strange Wilderness” or “The Benchwarmers” (all movies under the Happy Madision umbrella) were actually funny, “Grown Ups” might be just the summer nonsense you’ve been waiting for.

In “Grown Ups,” Sandler and his crew, which includes Kevin James, Rob Schneider, David Spade, and a very much out-of-place Chris Rock, play five childhood friends who reunite after 30 years when their middle school basketball coach passes away. Not only did Coach Buzzer (Blake Clark) teach them how to be champions on the court, he taught them to live life without any regrets.

Somehow the sound advice translates into the geeky grown friends deciding they should spend the Fourth of July weekend together at the same campground they frequented as boys. Lenny Feder (Sandler), a hotshot sports agent, wants to show his bratty sons and fashion designer wife Roxanne (Salma Hayek) they can survive without luxuries.

Schneider plays a holistic vegan with an elderly wife he swaps spit with; Rock plays an underappreciated stay-at-home dad; Spade is the life-long bachelor; and James is, well, the fat guy (most of his moments come in the form of sight gags written specifically for the portliest actor of the group).

Written by Sandler (“You Don’t’ Mess with the Zohan”) and Fred Wolf (“Strange Wilderness”), “Grown Ups” is nothing more than lowbrow mockery between characters that is on par with a brainless collection of “your mama” jokes.

It’s painful and awkward to watch these men lounge around with goofy smiles and nothing interesting to say. While most of the dialogue seems improvised, the only ones that seem to be snickering at the stupidity of it all are the actors themselves.

Centered on a terribly-written, pun-filled screenplay, “Grown Ups” is another lame entry into the more juvenile projects Sandler can’t seem to kick. If he has any interest at all to make movies with more to offer than one-liners you could find on the walls of a public bathroom, Sandler will have to cut the cord that connects him to Dugan and his regular army of idiots.