Whether you prefer comedy or drama, there is an Adam Sandler movie for just about anyone. He is one of the most versatile actors of our time, giving us everything from the caring father to the odd but romantic lover to the hilarious wedding singer. His characters have tapped into the rawness of our humanity as well as caused us to roll over with laughter.
So far, his fans have not had the opportunity to see him accept an Academy Award. However, that lack of recognition hasn't stopped the impact he has had on his audience. While some of his movies just aren't that great, he has made many that have had a lasting impact on people. And Sandler isn't stopping anytime soon; he recently made waves with a teen comedy, while the animated adventure Leo is one of the top new movies streaming this week.
Here are some of the best Adam Sandler movies you can stream online right now.
Director Paul Thomas Anderson saw something in Adam Sandler that the rest of us didn't at first when he chose him for the part of Barry Egan in Punch-Drunk Love. Breaking free from his traditional comedic parts, Sandler's Barry is a lonely man who operates his own business but doesn't seem to be getting much out of life. He isn't achieving much social or romantic success. Add to that, he has eight sisters who berate him endlessly. Things get complicated when he contacts a phone sex line, who won't take Barry's no for an answer after they demand more money from him.
However, when he meets Lena Leonard, a friend of one of his sisters, his life starts to turn in a new and surprisingly positive direction. Sandler's endearing display of Barry's awkwardness and clumsy but well-meaning romantic attempts, make this one of his best movies.
Billy Madison is one of Adam Sandler's first starring roles, and he delivers entertaining comedy throughout, making it a movie you don't want to miss. Sandler depicts an adult who has managed to avoid maturity his entire life. When Billy ruins an important dinner with his typical antics, his father, Darren McGavin's Brian Madison, chooses the obviously sinister vice president as his ideal predecessor when he retires.
That's when Sandler's Billy convinces his father to give him another chance, promising to go back to school starting with grade one. Watching Adam Sandler get along with his fellow 8-year-old classmates is one of many levels of humor in the movie. He also faces all the challenges of growing up, such as bullying and crushes, in the most bizarre but hilarious way possible. The jokes in the movie may come across as outrageous at times, but considering the premise, that's part of the movie's charm.
Stream on Hulu
Even if you aren't one for sports movies, you'll be pleasantly surprised by Adam Sandler's part in Hustle. He plays Stanley Sugarman, an international scout for the 76ers. Overseas, he discovers a talented player, Bo Cruz, and brings him back to the United States. He fully believes Cruz will either be signed by the 76ers or selected by another professional team during the NBA Draft.
Stanley's struggle for redemption is at the core of this story, and Sandler plays it perfectly. He balances seriousness with occasional bouts of comedy as he coaches Bo to prepare him for the draft. If you are an NBA fan, you'll love all the cameos of real players, both past and present, that appear throughout the movie. However, everyone will appreciate this film, even if they aren't into sports, in large part because of Sandler's excellent acting.
Stream on Netflix
The Wedding Singer
It's hard not to mention an Adam Sandler movie without including one of his best comedies. Starring alongside Drew Barrymore, Sandler plays Robbie Hart, a wedding singer who is about to get married to the wrong woman. It isn't long before he realizes he is falling in love with Drew Barrymore's Julia Sullivan, who is a waitress at many of Robbie's wedding events. Ironically, she happens to be getting married soon too.
The classic romantic trope of bringing two people in love together who could potentially end up apart is the driving force of this movie. Although a familiar storyline, Sandler successfully balances romance with comedy, which makes this movie shine. In addition, it's no surprise that he and Drew Barrymore appeared in several more films together, as their chemistry is on point.
Stream on Hulu
Uncut Gems was one of the top movies in 2019 and is considered one of the best of Adam Sandler's career. He stars as Howard Ratner, a jeweler and gambling addict who is struggling to pay off his debts. Meanwhile, his wife, Julia De Fiore, played by Julia Fox, is threatening to leave him. Things finally start to turn around for him when he gets his hands on an uncut black opal smuggled in from Ethiopia.
Things start to go off the rails when Sandler's Howard trades the opal with an NBA star who wanted it for luck during a game and never gets it back. Everything comes to head as Howard tries to reclaim the gem that he is convinced will solve his problems. Sandler is at the top of his game in this role,
Stream on Netflix
The Meyerowitz Stories
It shouldn't be any surprise that The Meyerowitz Stories made it to our list. It has an all-star cast that showcases the complications of family relationships, one that will be familiar to many who watch this movie. Adam Sandler stars as Danny Meyerowitz, who just recently moved back home after his marriage fell apart.
When their father, Harold, played by Dustin Hoffman, gets into an accident, Danny's estranged siblings join him. Ben Stiller plays his brother Matthew and Elizabeth Marvel plays his sister, Jean. The dynamic between all three siblings feels very true to life, especially in the way they relate to the father and each other. Sandler's part in the film is one of his strongest and most dynamic characters yet, making it one of his best roles.
Stream on Netflix
Reign Over Me
Adam Sandler shows his incredible depth again with his role in Reign Over Me. In the film, Don Cheadle's Alan Johnson runs into Charlie Fineman, an old college roommate he hasn't seen in years. Sandler's Charlie is a shadow of whom he used to be, ever since the loss of his entire family on the 9/11 attacks.
However, Alan isn't going to let his friend go too easy and attempts to bring him back to life by sending him to a therapist, played by Liv Tyler. Unfortunately, what Cheadle's character doesn't realize is the depth of his friend's struggles as things go further off the rails in Charlie's life. Adam Sandler's character is a blend of sorrow, familiar awkwardness, and a touch of humor that isn't ever too far behind any of his parts.
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Nicole Pyles is a writer in Portland, Oregon. She loves movies, especially Lifetime movies, obscure TV movies, and disaster flicks. Her writing has been featured in Better Homes and Gardens, Mental Floss, WOW! Women on Writing, Ripley's Believe it or Not, and more. When she isn't watching movies, she's spending time with family, reading, and writing short stories. Say hi on Twitter @BeingTheWriter.