Eric D. Snider

Who's Your Caddy?

Movie Review

Who's Your Caddy?

by Eric D. Snider

Grade: D-

Released: July 27, 2007

 

Directed by:

Cast:

The funny thing about white people, you see, is that they are very different from black people. Yes! It's true! And that's why it's so funny.

That is the premise behind ... well, a lot of movies. But specifically "Who's Your Caddy?," a monstrously ill-conceived and unfunny comedy about what happens when some black folks barge into a snooty white country club and start shakin' things up.

There are two clues that this movie will be worthless:

1) The premise is old and tired.

2) It's called "Who's Your Caddy?"

When will Hollywood learn that a pun title is the kiss of death? It's a sign of desperation, of trying too hard to be funny. ("We'll even give the movie a FUNNY TITLE! 'Cause we're ZANY! KA-ZOING!!") There has never been a good movie that had a pun title.*

This one stars OutKast's Antwan Andre Patton (aka "Big Boi") as C-Note, a millionaire rap producer who wants to join the Carolina Pines Golf & Polo Club. The film is half over before we're given any clue as to his reason for wanting to join, or even a hint that there IS a reason. All we know is that he wants a membership, and the stuffy white board of governors denies him.

As far as the movie is concerned, that's all we NEED to know. Stupid ol' Whitey is trying to keep black people down, and we ain't gonna stand for it!

Actually, however, though the board's racism is clearly a factor, they do point out -- truthfully, apparently -- that there's a five-year waiting list for new members. Before C-Note and his entourage burst into the club's office, the board is seen turning down applications from such noteworthies as Bill Clinton and Rosie O'Donnell. ("He had a popular talk show," someone says of the latter, which kind of made me laugh.) Bigotry aside, the club evidently has a legitimate reason for not granting C-Note an immediate membership: nobody gets an immediate membership.

But hey, let's play the race card anyway. To retaliate, C-Note buys the estate immediately adjacent to the club's golf course, then starts filming licentious music videos on the back lawn as a disruption. The head of the board, named Dick Cummings (seriously, movie?) and played by Jeffrey Jones, is shocked and appalled and wants to know how he can buy C-Note off. He sends a lawyer, Shannon Williams (Tamala Jones), carefully chosen because she's black, to make him an offer on the property. No deal. C-Note won't sell for any price. He wants a club membership.

So Cummings and the board give him a membership. They have an ace up their sleeve, though: New members are on probation for four weeks, and even the slightest infraction on the club rules is grounds for dismissal. Surely C-Note and his rowdy posse of guests will screw up somehow!

They do, of course, but then they outsmart Cummings when their infractions are revealed. For example, one of C-Note's buddies brought a gun to the golf course, a strict no-no. But since he has a letter signed by the mayor granting him permission to carry his gun anywhere he pleases, it's OK! Which is ridiculous, of course. In real life, you might have the right to carry a gun in public (laws differ from state to state), but any private-property owner can bar you from bringing it onto his private property if he so chooses. Yet Cummings just hems and haws and blusters and accepts that, well, if the mayor signed the letter, then I guess the club's rule is moot!

There's eventually a golf match planned between Cummings and C-Note that will settle everything, with the losing party leaving the club forever. In the meantime, it's a parade of the standard jokes. C-Note's obese friend Big Large (Faizon Love) walks around naked in the locker room, where the old white men are frightened and intrigued by his giant penis. All the white women who encounter C-Note's group, including Cummings' trophy wife (Susan Ward), want to sleep with them. They drive a golf cart with spinning rims. They heckle and harass other club members for being white, rich, and reserved -- in other words, for being different from them. Being loud and raucous and listening to hip-hop music, that's the RIGHT way to behave. You old, stuffy white people? You're ridiculous.

Cummings has a 14-year-old son named Wilson (Andy Milonakis) who hates his dad and is delighted by C-Note's posse. Big Large takes Wilson to a nightclub and shows him how to slap a go-go dancer's butt.

"Whose [butt] is that?"
"Hers?"
"No!"
"Oh! It's mine!"

And soon enough he's up there on the pedestal, freak-dancing with her and slapping her butt. It is heartwarming to see a young kid be taken under a mentor's wing, isn't it?

The director is Don Michael Paul ("Half Past Dead"), a white guy who co-wrote the screenplay with two other white guys, Robert Henny and Bradley Allenstein ("Juwanna Mann"). I've addressed the film's skewed worldview; I should also mention the sloppy subplots and careless storytelling methods.

Why is there an interlude with two midget hitmen hired by Cummings to get rid of C-Note? Why introduce C-Note's mother (Jenifer Lewis) into the film if she's not going to serve a purpose? Why wait until 45 minutes into the movie to indicate C-Note's reason for joining the club in the first place? It's bad to have characters who behave without motivation -- and it doesn't count if they have a motivation and you just don't tell us what it is.

Antwan Andre Patton showed considerable charisma in last year's lackluster "Idlewild," and he shows it again in this dud. He's likable even when the movies he's in aren't.

As his enemy, Jeffrey Jones is essentially reprising the role that made him famous: Principal Rooney in "Ferris Bueller's Day Off." Here he must endure the same physical humiliations (a face full of horse manure, for example) and make the same withering, suspicious facial expressions. The chief difference, I suppose, is that "Ferris Bueller" was funny, and "Who's Your Caddy?" is not. That may seem obvious, but I'd have thought a lot of things about this movie would be obvious.

*(See the blog for further discussion of this sweeping generalization.)

Grade: D-

Rated PG-13, moderate profanity, some locker room nudity, a fair amount of vulgarity and crude language

1 hr., 33 min.

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This item has 18 comments

  1. Ashley says:

    May I offer "Arrested Development" as a pun-ny title for a funny show? I grant it's not a movie, but are you really concerned with technicalities?

  2. BeeDub says:

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think that "Arrested Development" is a pun.

  3. Kyralessa says:

    It's surprisingly hard to think of *any* movies with puns as titles. But "Shaun of the Dead" surely qualifies, and Eric gave that an A-.

    And the only reason I can think of that I went to the trouble to mention that is that otherwise I just wasted my time reading a negative review for a movie I wasn't going to see anyway. (This movie supports the idea that while a good trailer doesn't guarantee a good movie, a bad trailer definitely guarantees a bad movie.)

  4. Ashley says:

    Arrested Development: (1) a housing project that won't ever be complete and (2) the psychology of the emotionally-stunted characters. Double-meaning behind one word, and thus, a pun.

  5. Dave the Slave says:

    This is blatant racism. "Look at the stupid old white people, aren't they funny!?" How is this not racist?
    And yet, even though I'm a ghostly, starkly-white whitey myself, I'm not so much offended that this movie's message is "white people are hopelessly uncool" as I am sad more people don't see it for the braindead racism it is.
    I just wish people would reverse the races in productions like this and maybe then they'd see how disgusting this is. If there were a movie produced with the message that African-Americans were (enter any negative discription here) everyone but brainless toothless skin head idiots would be ashamed it ever came into existance. "Because of the color of their skin (repeat previosuly specified stupid assumption)". Great message, movie.
    Maybe thats the market they were shooting for- the brainless toothless bigot-market. I have hope that this market is small...

    (same thing goes for the tag-line for a Mexican radio station here in Denver- "Latino and PROUD!" If you saw billboards and bumperstickers with "Caucasion and PROUD!" on em there'd be hell to pay! (and rightly so, its an idiotic statement no matter the race) -and besides, who takes pride in the color of their skin? Pathetic morons who have nothing else to take pride in.
    Now I'm sure some will say "But Latino means the Latin heritage and traditions, not skin color!" To these racists making excuses for themselves to be racist, I say why not be proud of something that unifies us? Everyone living in America could be proud to be Americans, showing our pride by trying to strengthen our nation together despite its many flaws. Not singling out and mocking others for being different from ourselves .. oh, because that doesnt fit on a bumper sticker as nicely as "Latino and PROUD!" i guess... )
    Long rant... ah well. I just hope this movie bombs, and that someday my black friend, my latin friend, and my islander friend can just be called my friends, and that, despite my white skin, I can some day learn to be cool. :-)

  6. Bickmo says:

    Why didn't this movie didn't get an F? On this site, reviews this scathing seem reserved for movies that flunk out of school, smoke weed, and get hired to work a McDonald's drive-thru. I'm curious to know what saves a movie as bad as "Who's Your Caddy?" from the coveted F.

  7. Maxo says:

    Eric gave Soul Plane a B- so I am surprised that this movie would be significantly worse than that. Soul Plane may not have as many whitey jokes or may be slightly less unoriginal compared to the Country Club Movie genre, or maybe he was just feeling kind when Soul Plane came out. My point is, if you are saying this movie is significantly WORSE than Soul Plane then I gotta see it.


    I just want to take this time to bring up that Andy Milonakis is actually 31 years old

  8. ClobberGirl says:

    Bickmo, I would suggest this is what saved the movie from an F: "Antwan Andre Patton showed considerable charisma in last year's lackluster "Idlewild," and he shows it again in this dud. He's likable even when the movies he's in aren't." Eric generally has nothing kind to say about the F-movies.

  9. The eBay DJ says:

    Max is correct...Andy Milonakis is a 31-year-old. Weird.

  10. Randy Tayler says:

    I think the movie is just as racist towards blacks as it is towards whites. Whether or not the moral order of the film says that one behavior model is better than an another, it sounds like it's reducing BOTH races to stereotypes.

    Why was this movie greenlit?

  11. Green-light says:

    Why did the movie give the golf club owners a legitimate reason for not letting C-note in? If the idea was to portray them as racist, just leave the scene out (or replace with one when they let a bunch of white people in immediately). And if the idea wasn't to portray them as racist, why did they run with it at all?

  12. Andrew D says:

    Green-light: because the filmmakers are retarded.

    Go any deeper than that into their psyche, and you may not find a way out.

  13. Green-light says:

    Oh, good. I was hoping it was that simple.

  14. peptidefarmer says:

    "Why was this movie greenlit?"

    Blaxploitation, my friends. It is alive and with us still.

  15. golfnov26 says:

    Buffoons!!!! Amos and Andy 2007

  16. Dustin Fife says:

    My El Salvadorian adopted friend is truly named Dick Cummings. The fact that he is from El Salvador and adopted truly does not seem like relevant information, but I truly believe that his parents love him less than the rest of their children. My evidences are as follows: 1) His parents had the audacity to name him Richard Cummings and then send him to public school in America. 2) They always refered to him as their adopted son, just like Gene Hackman in the Royal Tenenbaums always refered to Gwyneth Paltrow's character Margo. I believe they did it for the recognition that they were saintly enough to adopt a poor down-trodden boy. Personally I believe he was better off in El Salvador.

  17. Bubba says:

    ARE YOU SAYING BLACK PEOPLE AREN"T RACIST? DON"T USE WORDS THAT BITE......

  18. Lauren says:

    *giggles uncontrollably at Dustin Fife's comment.*

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