The Waterboy | Chicago Reader

The Waterboy

Geek-triumphs-after-all comedies can be charming, but in this one the triumphing begins so early it's hard to feel for the geek. After perfunctorily showing his mistreatment by obnoxious bullies, this 1998 movie about a college football team's resentful water boy (Adam Sandler) gets right to the mechanism of the happy ending—the prediction by another team's coach (Henry Winkler) that the water boy will soon be sublimating his rage in a devastating tackle. Per convention, Sandler's mother (Kathy Bates) keeps the apron strings as taut as the stomach muscles of the saucy girl (Fairuza Balk) who's after her son. Directed by Frank Coraci and written by Sandler and Tim Herlihy.

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