Do you believe in omens? When I tried to open the case in which Pauly Shore’s movie Adopted was packaged, it was very resistant. Very. Then I looked up Adopted on IMDb to see who else appears in it, and all I got was a blank page. So I went to the film’s web site—more blank pages!
When I finally got the DVD into my player, I was delighted (honestly!) to find that Adopted is preceded by trailers for cheesy comedies and thrillers. Sometimes you can’t beat cheesy; you can’t stay in a bad mood when watching cheesy films, and you can’t think about suicide (unless you’re the director or in the cast). As much as I like a good, high quality film, I like crappy, low quality garbage. It’s sort of like craving salty, then craving sweet.
As everyone knows, Pauly Shore is an idiot. He’s been an idiot for as long as he’s been in show business. He may have been an idiot before he ever got on a stage—I wouldn’t know. The thing is, he is so awfully good at being an idiot. Even though he’s gotten a little long in the tooth for innocence, he somehow projects it. Many of the things he says (in character) are sexist and racist, but coming from a hedonistic boob, they seem plainly ignorant, as if he just doesn’t know any better. Maybe “innocence” isn’t the right word; how about stupidity?
Adopted is a mockumentary directed by and starring Pauly Shore. It is the faux chronicle of Pauly’ s attempt to follow in the footsteps of Angelina Jolie and Madonna by adopting an African child. Naturally, he goes about it in all the wrong ways. He stops people in the street and asks if he can buy their children; he visits a healer and throws bones so she can tell him if he will find a child. He even visited the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy to see if he could get one of its students.
Pauly ends up at an orphan home which reminds him of the kind of place “where you would get medical marijuana.” He is allowed to take three orphans, one a day, to “try them out,” but he must return them by dark. As expected, Pauly makes for a less-than-adequate caregiver. He walks off and forgets the children when he sees beautiful women and he tends to drink a lot of wine, and allows the kids to do the same.
Adopted is 80 minutes of silliness wrapped around a message about celebrity adoptions. At the end of the DVD we read stupefying numbers regarding the world’s orphan population and wonder who will adopt these tens of millions of children. Fortunately for the children, it won’t be Pauly Shore.
On the other hand, if I (as the orphan I am) were given the choice between being adopted by Madonna or being adopted by Pauly Shore, I think I would choose Pauly. Instead of carting me around and using me for publicity, he would probably neglect me and leave me to my own devices. I would have the benefit of a rich, celebrity parent without having to deal with him. Unfortunately, life isn’t a mockumentary and nobody is going to adopt me.
Adopted is not hilariously funny. It is not riotously funny. It’s also not in the least bit serious. It’s cheesy and goofy and requires a minimum of consciousness. Adopted is exactly the right movie for when one wants to be entertained, but doesn’t want to think. If one likes Pauly Shore, of course.
DVD extras include bonus scenes which aren’t that big a bonus and the theatrical trailer. Bottom Line: Would I buy/rent/stream Adopted? I have to admit, I’m a Pauly Shore fan. If I were in the mood, I’d stream it.