REVIEW: The Wrong Missy (2020)

Release Poster – Netflix

The following is a review of The Wrong Missy — Directed by Tyler Spindel.

As far as I am aware, Tyler Spindel’s The Wrong Missy is the eighth film that Netflix has distributed for Happy Madison Productions, the production company founded by Adam Sandler. Most of these films feature Adam Sandler in the lead role, and, often, the films take place in sunny locations. This has led to these films jokingly being referred to as ‘vacations’ that Sandler takes his friends and family on to relax between takes. I don’t know if there is any truth to that common joke, but, come to think of it, The Wrong Missy, which, notably, doesn’t feature Adam Sandler, actually does take place in sunny Hawaii.  In any case, this film, unfortunately, isn’t the return to form for Happy Madison that I wanted it to be.

In Tyler Spindel’s The Wrong Missy, we follow Tim Morris (played by David Spade), an unassuming single man. While at the airport, he accidentally swaps luggage with Melissa (played by Molly Sims), whose friends call her ‘Missy.’ As a result, Melissa and Tim both miss their flights, so they go out for drinks. Melissa is Tim’s dream-woman. She is a tall, blonde beauty who has previously won a beauty pageant. Thankfully, Melissa and Tim hit it off and exchange phone numbers. Tim is, naturally, excited, and so he wants to invite her on a company retreat to Hawaii. However, he soon finds out that he accidentally invited, you guessed it, the wrong ‘Missy’ (played by Lauren Lapkus), a confident, outgoing, and wild woman he once dated, and it is too late to uninvite her when they meet up on the plane.

As you would expect, this Netflix-Happy Madison film features Adam Sandler’s friends and family, like Rob Schneider, Nick Swardson, and Jackie Sandler. Sandler has had a great relationship with Netflix, but his absence is felt in The Wrong Missy. Although David Spade is much more believable as the straight-man than Sandler probably would’ve been, Spade sleepwalks through the film, and I wish we would’ve gotten the chance to see Adam Sandler act across from Lauren Lapkus in this film. Because Lapkus gives a committed performance as the titular character. Although not every joke of hers lands, you do get the feeling that she deserved much better than this film.

So, while Spade’s performance is slightly dull, I appreciated that Lapkus threw herself into her, frankly, rather annoying character head-on. Lapkus makes a lot out of a little here. Generally, I don’t think the comedy works. I chuckled, perhaps, two or three times. There is a scene with a shark that features some gross-out humor that I really didn’t like, but the person that I saw the film with laughed out loud, so your mileage may vary. However, I must say that some of the sexual comedy — of which there is a lot — is not just cringe-inducing but also seriously inappropriate and problematic. The things that Lapkus’ character does to Spade’s character while he is asleep is never okay, and I don’t think comedies should downplay the inappropriateness of her actions.

It is also a shame that the plot of the film feels so familiar and predictable. I basically saw the narrative arc coming from a mile away. You don’t really need to know any more than the premise to know where this story is going. So, ultimately, Tyler Spindel’s The Wrong Missy suffers from unfunny — and sometimes very inappropriate — jokes and a terribly predictable plot. However, Lauren Lapkus’ unrestrained and wild performance is sometimes entertaining.

4 out of 10

– Jeffrey Rex Bertelsen.

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