Adam Sandler is a Dumbass
Adam Sandler is a Dumbass story by Alan Nafzger (copyright, 2021)
Adam Sandler is a Dumbass – PREMISE:
Adam Sandler writes letters and saves numerous women from the monotony of prison life, and later when he gets into trouble with a drug cartel they return the favor by rescuing him.
Adam Sandler is a Dumbass – SETTING:
Contemporary, Gatesville Texas. There are four women’s prisons located in Gatesville. And of course, Texas is famous for putting everyone in prison for a long time for little or no reason. The number of women in Texas prisons has doubled in the last ten years. Why don’t we have the “Adam Sandler” character… sending letters to women in prison and being their friend and trying to help them adjust, giving them hope… and when they get out of prison he picks them up so they don’t have to ride the smelly bus back home… but his pickup truck is a junker, smoking and sputtering … worse than the bus. But his heart is in the right place… He’s the last “chivalrous” man on earth.
When they leave prison, he gives them all a t-shirt or jersey from their favorite team, so they don’t have to wear the unfashionable clothes they give the inmates when they leave. For example, an inmate says that her team are the “Sooners.” Adam gets this information and has them a T-shirt when they exit the prison. And they feel better… they feel a bit closer to home the first day out. No more prison clothes.
The women are appreciative… of course; he’s liked but he’s goofy like Happy Gilmore or Billy Madison. But because they are locked up, the women didn’t know this. They only know him from the letters. Some of the women are in love with him (in love with his letters) and some just want to have sex with him (they’ve been locked up), but he’s not been writing them for that. He’s offered sex, but he politely turns it down. He’s an innocent Quioxtic hero… He’s a modern Don Quixote. There in the prison parking lot; they are all a little disappointed; he’s not what they expected. He’s never lied to them, but their expectations maybe were too high.
For example, he writes them he has a 1970 F100 Ford Truck… well, they dream that it’s been restored, repainted, and fancy like a show car. We see on the screen what the woman dream and then there is Adam’s reality. It is a 1970 F100 classic model, two-tone half-ton. But it’s not restored and not fancy… actually, it’s in very bad conditions. He didn’t lie to them, but their expectations aren’t realistic.
Also, Adam says he has a tiny cottage in Bel-Aire Estates… which sound’s like a ritzy neighborhood, but of course, it was nice… 50 years previous. Now it’s run down and lower-middle-income. His house isn’t painted and the yard isn’t sculpted. Of course, the women dream in prison that it’s painted and the yard well managed. He doesn’t lie to them but they imagine the house in a positive light.
And he writes that he wears designer clothes — Ralph Lauren, Izod, Van Heusen, Polo — but we see that he goes to the Goodwill thrift shop and finds really good deals. Some of the clothes have holes in them or missing buttons. And they might be designer names but the patterns are a bit odd, maybe a bit too loud for good fashion. He hasn’t lied, but the women dream he has money and good taste.
And when he picks them up, the more he talks the more they realize something is wrong with him; for example, when he tells them that he has a “dancer” girlfriend. No one this goofy has a girlfriend that dances nude. And he says that he’s banned from inside the club “the club owner says I’m bad for business”, but Adam waits outside in the parking lot every night so he can walk her to her car. Basically, this dancer just uses him for her own personal security. He might get beaten up every time he’s around her. She is gonna be one of the villains in the end.
His letters are cool, but he’s really a dolt.
There is a fight in the strip club parking lot. Adam’s walking the dancer and her girlfriends (maybe the dancer she’s a lesbian so he REALLY has no chance at her) to her car and he has to fight these rough-looking cartel members… but he doesn’t fight so well, naturally. However, Adam getting beat up allows the girls to get away. After the dancers have escaped, then he fights relatively well; he doesn’t win, but it shows he’s willing to take a punch to deflect the bad guy’s attention away from the girls. He even smarts off to the men beating him up so they won’t chase the dancers who are getting away.
The bad guys, in the parking lot, are about to run over him with their car but the club owner stops them. “If you kill my retard, then I’m gonna have to ban you from the club.” The bad guys leave. The club owner doesn’t take Adam to the hospital or call the cops, but he takes Adam home. Inside Adam’s house, the club owner figures it out, learns that Adam is writing a lot of women in prison. He thinks it’s a bit weird, but “to each his own.” They become momentary friends… The wealthy club owner has never helped a woman in his life… but he wants to put ice on Adam’s swollen and bruised face… but he can’t because Adam has sold his refrigerator… “Well, Why did you sell it?” “Needed stamps” is Adam’s answer.
The club owner and Adam have a good long heart-to-heart chat. Adam is forced to examine his life and he’s perfectly okay with it, and we learn something about his motivation (he is innocent) and we see his stubbornness (he’s NOT gonna stop writing letters to female inmates). It gives him a sense of self-worth. It is all he has going for himself. The club owner doesn’t realize that it’s all very innocent. “Do you realize you are preying on these women when they are at their weakest?” The club owner tries to talk him out of writting the letters, but Adam argues valid chivalrous (old) ideas… The club owner tries to explain, “All those envelopes (Adam has 301,923 letters) had to have stamps, right?” Adam corrects him… 2 stamps… one coming and one going. The club owner argues, “Well if you hadn’t pissed all that money away on stamps, being kind to women that are locked up, you would be able to… for example, buy my night club and then you could have all the women you want… women who aren’t locked up, women that are available.” Adam doesn’t understand “available” because he doesn’t expect sex in return. The club owner is in the business of sexually exploiting women (it is probably both his business model AND his chosen lifestyle). They are the opposite; let’s just say they are friends for one scene.
And in this one scene we see clearly the PREMISE of the movie… The club owner states it… “Only an idiot plays the hero to a women. Let them fend for themselves; no woman ever did anything for me that I didn’t have to coerce out of them. Don’t be a sucker and there aren’t any knights in shining armor anymore. If you want women, you should have saved your money and opened a strip club, create jobs for these women. That’s how you treat a woman.” The club owner’s cold stoic attitude only makes Adam look better. Contrasting characters.
Adam works as a carryout boy at a grocery. During his lunch break… Adam goes to see an attorney, who has made the mistake of advertising FREE consultations. Adam’s been going to see him every day for 5 years now, the talk is always basically the same. The lawyer is getting annoyed and asks Adam why he has to come every day, different inmate, and hear basically the same information. Adam does know how the parole system works, but he can’t lie to the women. He must actually do what he tells them he’s doing. He tells the women he’s asking questions to an attorney (to give them hope of parole) and he actually is doing what he says he’s doing. Adam takes good notes and relays that information to the women in prison. That is the opening scene? Ya think?
Adam leaves the lawyer’s office and he goes by the post office and buys 2 or 3 stamps. With mostly loose change… Adam’s existence is all very nickel-and-dime. Adam spends every penny he makes on letters to women in prison. Crappy job. Crappy truck. Crappy neighborhood. Crappy computer. Good attitude, however.
Adam passes the postman, on the other side of the street, and gives him the “what’s up?” gesture. And the postman signals “7” and Adam gestures “YES” and raises his fists in the air, celebrating like Rocky for a second. Adam shows his happiness. Evidently, they meet occasionally and the postman is keeping score how many letters he gets each day.
Something occurs to Adam, he only has six stamps, but he’s gonna need seven because there are seven letters. He pulls out his pockets. Only 12 cents. He frets.
At work, a lady is digging through her purse looking for money to tip Adam. Adam is anxious; he needs a 7th stamp. She can’t find any money… he asks her if she has any stamps and states that he can use stamps just the same as money. “Stamps are even better.” She does have some stamps and she tips Adam that way. Adam’s happy.
Then after working at the grocery store, we see Adam working all these odd jobs. Maybe he cuts grass, and picks up dog shit in people’s yards. And then he dives into dumpsters looking for stuff to sell. He finds a 35-year-old computer in the trash; he takes it home. And then he collects beer cans to recycle. He also goes by a paper factory and digs in the trash for paper. He also goes by a hair salon and collects the mostly empty bottles of hair dye; he gets really excited when the owner/beautician just hands him an entire industrial-sized bottle of hair dye. It’s an odd color and she just wants to be rid of it. Adam is elated.
When it gets dark, he returns to his tiny house… he takes the mail from the mailbox (six letters from inmates). He flips out looking all over for the seventh. He’s VERY concerned. But then he recounts what he has in his hand and there are seven letters.
Inside the house are files and files of letters he’s gotten from female inmates. He’s very organized but has the WORST computers, TI-99s, Commodore 64s, an old 512K Macintosh, and a few old dot-matrix printers. The old printers are good because he’s using the hair dye as ink. And he’s cutting the paper from the paper factory trash into letter size so he can send letters. He manufactures his own envelopes from the free paper. Basically, he has a letter-writing factory that he operates on a shoestring budget.
In fact… there is a shoe-string factory in Gateville and he digs through their trash and gets their throwaways and then Adam sells the shoestrings to kids (for stamps) at school recess. He matches shoestrings with complementary colors. Yellow and Purple. Green and Red. Orange and Blue. The kids say, “aren’t they supposed to match?” Adam persuades them, “that’s the new style.” And the kids buy them. He shouldn’t be on school grounds, but… Adam is innocent (the whole town loves him)… and the school cop just waves at him. Also, people just give him a bit of money (or stamps) here and there as he walks around town.
Adam spends half the night writing the women back. He talks to himself (or maybe a bird, or dog, or fish)… so we see there is a lot of empathy and he cares enough to know a lot about each woman. These are not form letters. There are all personal. He’s asked important questions and they have shared important things. He writes them about recipes, and sports teams, and health and fitness. He’s got ten motivational self-help books that he quotes to them out of; they are returns from his store (the covers torn off). Positive slogans… he’s clearly a GREAT letter writer. He’s whatever the women want him to be… whatever they need him to be. He even has advice on Kagal exercises; one inmate apparently never heard of those. And Adam watches a BETA-MAX recording of Dr. Phil when he’s typing letters and he relays that information (advice) to the women.
He sleeps in his chair and doesn’t even appear to own a bed. Maybe he sold his bed as well. But the next morning, he takes the letters he’s written to the post office and goes back to work at the grocery store. So, it’s pretty much a cycle… we see a pattern. Work, work, work, letters, letters, letters.
NIGHT: The DEA and FBI are chasing an airplane out of Mexico and the cartel is pitching bales of drugs out of the plane to get rid of the evidence and… a suitcase full of cartel money falls from the plane directly into Adam’s chimney. It’s a one in million lucky shot. Adam’s not aware of this chase or the vast sum of money… he just sees the dust and ash fly everywhere and a single $100 bill floats down into the empty fireplace. The suitcase doesn’t fall through; it’s stopped by the damper.
Immediately, Adam takes the $100 to the post office, and it’s like he’s won the lottery and is at a bar celebrating. Happy as a lark. “Let me have 20 of the commemorative Bugs Bunny stamps; ‘Gina will like that one.’ Twenty of the bird stamps; ‘Terri will like those.’ And I need 80 of the Santa Claus stamps; ‘Everyone loves Santa.’” But the point is he knows each woman, which stamp she will enjoy the most. And he’s splurging. He tips the grandmother behind him in line one stamp because he’s taken so long.
When he gets home from the post office, there are 20 FBI agents looking in the trees and in the hedges. They are looking EVERYWHERE on his and the neighbor’s property, looking for the suitcase that was thrown from the plane. Evidently, the FBI found all the bales of drugs thrown from the plane… but they are missing one suitcase (the money). They were videotaping the entire chase with infra-red cameras. And the FBI asks Adam about it and he isn’t lying; he can honestly say he doesn’t know anything about it. Adam doesn’t put two and two together until later.
They want to search Adam’s house and he lets them. They look at all his files. “Are you writing women in prison? Do you know how low down that is? You gotta be hard up, son! Why don’t you do what every man in this town seems to be doing; go down to the cabaret and buy yourself a nice girl?” Adam’s answer is, “they’re lonely in prison.” They ask him if he’s ever been locked up and Adam says, “of course not.” And the FBI agents call him an “idiot.” But the FBI forgets to look in the chimney. The money remains there.
But the cartel, they want their money back. So they are watching the FBI and the FBI is watching everyone in the neighborhood.
It’s on the Dr. Phil show that the missing suitcase is suspected of holding millions of dollars. “I wish something like that would fall in my back yard.” Dr. Phil has a guest on that will testify how many hundred dollar bills will fit in a suitcase. Dr. Phil shows an arial image of the neighborhood where they suspect the money was dropped. “According to the FBI, the suitcase could have been dropped anywhere from here to here, on this flight path” Only then does Adam realize what is happening. When he does put two-and-two together, he reaches up into the chimney and pulls out several $100 bills.
The next morning before work, he buys a slew of money orders and in the breakroom, he puts them in envelopes and sends them to the prison commissary, and the money is put on the female prisoner’s accounts (books).
Later, we see all the women, exiting the commissary with lotions, soups, ice cream, and books, and magazines. Shampoos and soaps, and all the other stuff they’ve needed and wanted. Naturally, they also buy stamps, paper and pen.
The dancer… she only lets Adam tell everyone she’s his girlfriend… it sounds good (cute). She brags to her friends that she’s “befriended a retard” and “I let him walk me to my car; in case someone causes trouble at least there is someone other than me to get beat up.” She cares nothing about Adam. She’s a more villainous woman than any of the inmates, who went to prison because of bad luck, a bad man, or they just liked to have fun (fun is illegal in Texas). The dancer is actually only a prostitute working out of a strip bar, but Adam loves her and he can’t just give her $100… well that would make her obviously a prostitute, so Adam gives her a $100 that he says she dropped. Of course, she takes the money but looks at him strangely and leaves.
Adam’s a little frustrated by the unrequited love, but he’s good-natured Adam Sandler; he just goes back to his routine.
Well, the FBI is not going to let the suitcase drop; they are asking around town about people spending money. No one wants to “rat” on Adam, but they do mention that he’d bought $100 worth of stamps, but they dismiss it, that’s not so unusual. “He always buys stamps.” The Post Master refuses to believe that Adam has the suitcase. The grocer mentions to the FBI that Adam did buy some money orders… which BTW is a common way to launder money. But everyone in the store attests that Adam is the most honest and sweet boy in town. Adam’s like 35-years-old, but the town thinks of him as “a little boy that’s always been a little slow.” The FBI asks the dancer and she rats Adam out in a less than a second. The FBI begins to watch Adam more closely. And the cartel is watching the FBI… which leads them directly to Adam.
While, the FBI takes a break at the cabaret and isn’t watching Adam…
The cartel breaks into Adam’s house, thrash it, wreck the computers and the files while looking for the money. Of course, they don’t find it. They beat Adam up, but he won’t tell. They threaten to kill him; he thinks he’s a hero. He won’t tell. There is enough money there to buy a million stamps.
He tells the drug gang that he has all the time in the world that eventually they will let him go and he can return to doing what he does. They want to know what that is… and Adam tells them that he writes women in prison. They look at the files… “is that what all this is?” Adam nods… they call him a “dumbass” and tie him up.
The cartel takes Adam to a warehouse. They lock him up and beat him and they don’t feed him for a week. He eats a bug.
So Adam can’t write the women in prison… the mailman is concerned about the mail that is piling up. Also, the grocery manager is taking the groceries to the cars. Most importantly, Adam’s not there to pick the women up when they are released as he’s promised… but remember many of the women love him and when they get out of prison they come to see him; they have his address, of course.
Three inmates in one day are released and visit his house… They don’t know he writes 100s of women. The front door has been kicked in and files are everywhere. The house has been ransacked. The women read some of the letters and quickly understand their relationship with Adam has been something wholesale, but they aren’t too angry. Maybe they are a bit annoyed at first, but they find where he has sacks with their names on them, and inside are Sooner, Michigan, and Texas Tech t-Shirts and cell phones and girl stuff (perfume)… waiting. They realize he would have picked them up and delivered them wherever, except that he’s been perhaps killed or kidnapped. They find blood on the floor.
The three women go to a diner and try to figure out what to do. The women speak about how down and out they were, feeling worthless, and what Adam’s letters meant to them. They agree they are going to find out what happened.
They decide to use their new cell phones to call their friends. They go back to the house and begin contacting the women Adam has helped. They circulate the story and some can’t help, but after a time an army of women arrive and they are all ready to help. Some of the women have been following the story on the news. They hack the FBI computers and learn what they know. They infiltrate the cartel and learn where they are keeping Adam.
They rescue Adam from the warehouse. They are outlaw women and they know how to fight and shoot and mostly they know where the cartel is hiding everything. Maybe they set fire to the drugs in the warehouse. The women kick the cartel’s butt and call the cops. The entire cartel is arrested. Adam is safe. Six women take him to a restaurant and argue over who is going to buy him something to eat. The dancer is watching from another booth; she is livid!!! The ex-cons understand how badly she’s treated Adam, they call her some choice names when they leave.
The dancer who has been a bitch the entire movie and told the FBI that Adam gave her the $100, she is beaten up by the other dancers in the parking lot. The fight is over but she swings her purse at one and out flies all sorts of drug paraphernalia and dope. The dancer’s trying to pick it up when the local cops drive up. It’s all caught on video-tape, the dancer trying to pick it all up. She’s going to prison.
With 20 cartel members under arrest, the FBI forgets all about the money and Adam keeps it.
FINAL SEQUENCE: A woman is mowing Adam’s lawn. Another is painting his house. The inside of Adam’s house is shown. It’s now a super-modern office. He has a full kitchen and things are looking extremely clean. The files have been picked up off the floor and digitized. There are new state-of-the-art computers and printers. There are six beautiful women, ex-convicts, doing secretarial work. They are affixing stamps and placing letters in envelopes. One is taking a box of 100 envelopes to the post office. Another woman is on the internet and printing up lists of recently sentenced women. One woman brings Adam a Dr. Pepper and a grill-cheese with onions sandwich.
FINAL SHOT: Adam is at the nicest superfast computer, typing letters to lady inmates. Nothing has changed only now he has a staff and it’s all very upscale.
ROLL END CREDITS:
Alan Nafzger (alan.nafzger@SPAMgmail.com)
Adam Richard Sandler (born September 9, 1966) is an American comedian, actor, and filmmaker. He was a cast member on Saturday Night Live from 1990 to 1995, before going on to star in many Hollywood films, which have combined to earn more than $2 billion at the box office. Sandler had an estimated net worth of $420 million in 2020, and signed a further four-movie deal with Netflix worth over $250 million.
Sandler’s comedic roles include Billy Madison (1995), Happy Gilmore (1996), The Waterboy (1998), The Wedding Singer (1998), Big Daddy (1999), Mr. Deeds (2002), 50 First Dates (2004), The Longest Yard (2005), Click (2006), Grown Ups (2010), Just Go with It (2011), Grown Ups 2 (2013), Blended (2014), Murder Mystery (2019) and Hubie Halloween (2020). He also voiced Dracula in the first three films of the Hotel Transylvania franchise (2012–2018).
While some of his comedic films, including Jack and Jill (2011), have been panned, resulting in Sandler receiving nine Golden Raspberry Awards and 37 Raspberry Award nominations, more than any actor other than Sylvester Stallone, he has received critical acclaim for his dramatic performances in the dramedy films Spanglish (2004), Reign Over Me (2007), and Funny People (2009). He has also been roundly praised for his appearances in auteur led films including Punch-Drunk Love (2002) by Paul Thomas Anderson, Noah Baumbach‘s The Meyerowitz Stories (2017), and the Safdie brothers‘ Uncut Gems (2019).