The Longest Yard (2005 film)
The Longest Yard is a 2005 American sports prison comedy film and a remake of the 1974 film of the same name. Adam Sandler plays the protagonist Paul Crewe, a disgraced former professional quarterback for the Pittsburgh Steelers, who is forced to form a team from the prison inmates to play football against their guards.
|The Longest Yard|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Peter Segal|
|Produced by||Jack Giarraputo|
|Screenplay by||Sheldon Turner|
|Based on||The Longest Yard|
by Albert S. Ruddy
David Patrick Kelly
The Great Khali
|Music by||Teddy Castellucci|
|Edited by||Jeff Gourson|
|Box office||$190.3 million|
Burt Reynolds, who played Sandler's role in the original, co-stars as Nate Scarborough, the inmates' coach. Chris Rock plays Crewe's friend, known as Caretaker. The cast includes James Cromwell, Nelly, William Fichtner and several former and current professional athletes such as Terry Crews, Michael Irvin, Brian Bosworth, Bill Romanowski, Bill Goldberg, Bob Sapp, Kevin Nash, Stone Cold Steve Austin, and Dalip "The Great Khali" Singh Rana. The film was produced by MTV Films and Happy Madison Productions and distributed by Paramount Pictures and Columbia Pictures, and was released on May 27, 2005.
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Paul Crewe (Adam Sandler) is a former NFL player who, one night, gets drunk and goes joyriding in the Bentley of his girlfriend Lena (Courteney Cox), crashing it. It is revealed that he was accused of shaving points in a big game, although it was never proven.
In prison, Warden Rudolph Hazen (James Cromwell), wishing to boost his prison's reputation for future elections as State Governor, uses threats and confinement in a hot box to coerce Crewe into helping the prison guards' football team, led by the hostile Captain Knauer (William Fichtner). Crewe informs Hazen that what Hazen's team needs is a tune-up game to boost the guards' confidence, and is therefore coerced to form an inmate team to play against the guards. He does so with the help of a newfound friend, Caretaker (Chris Rock). They start off with a poorly organized team, before being noticed by another prisoner, former college football star Nate Scarborough (Burt Reynolds), who decides to help coach the team by gathering several intimidating inmates as a boost to the team's strength. Hazen and the guards hinder Crewe's team in several ways, but they overcome the obstacles. Meanwhile, inmate Unger (David Patrick Kelly) spies on the activities of the inmates and after being pressured by the guards, rigs Crewe’s radio with an explosive. Caretaker unknowingly enters the cell to give a photo gift to Crewe, but is killed when he tries to turn the dial on the radio.
On game day, the inmates are revitalized in the wake of Caretaker's murder when Crewe reveals Caretaker's last gift to the team, quality gear and uniforms from his cousin at Reebok with the team name "Mean Machine" on the uniforms. The first half focuses on team efforts to overcome a rough start to tie the game at halftime at 14 all, while the second half focuses on Crewe's past actions and learns some valuable lessons. Mean Machine rallies from a 3-touchdown deficit with some strange offensive plays before scoring a 2-pt conversion to win the game at 36-35 with no time left on the game clock.
Hazen admonishes Knauer for losing a fixed game and notices that Crewe is heading towards the exit. Eagerly implying Crewe is trying to escape, Hazen orders that Crewe be shot for attempting to escape. Knauer hesitates and at the last moment realizes (and scornfully tells Hazen) that Crewe is only picking up the game football. Crewe returns it to Hazen, telling him to "stick it in [his] trophy case." Moss and Joey Battle (Bill Goldberg) give Hazen a Gatorade shower, and when he tells them that this has earned them a week in the hot box.
- Adam Sandler as Paul "Wrecking" Crewe
- Chris Rock as James "Caretaker" Farrell
- Nelly as Earl Megget
- David Patrick Kelly as Unger
- Terry Crews as "Cheeseburger" Eddy
- Nicholas Turturro as Brucie
- Bill Goldberg as Joey "Battle" Battaglio
- Bob Sapp as Switowski
- Steve Reevis as Billy "Baby Face Bob" Rainwater
- Lobo Sebastian as Torres
- Dalip Singh as Turley
- Joey "Coco" Diaz as Anthony "Big Tony" Cobianco
- Eddie Bunker as "Skitchy" Rivers
- Tracy Morgan as Miss Tucker
- Cloris Leachman as Lynette Grey
- Burt Reynolds as Coach Nate Scarborough
- Michael Irvin as Deacon Moss
- D12 as Basketball Convicts
- James Cromwell as Warden Rudolph Hazen
- William Fichtner as Captain Brian Knauer
- Bill Romanowski as Guard Lambert
- Brian Bosworth as Guard Garner
- Kevin Nash as Sergeant Engleheart
- Steve Austin as Guard Dunham
- Michael Papajohn as Guard Papajohn
- Conrad Goode as Guard Webster
- Brandon Molale as Guard Malloy
- Todd Holland as Guard Holland
- Walter Williamson as Errol Dandridge
- John Hockridge as Guard Hock
- Allen Covert as Referee
- Rob Schneider as Punky
- Chris Berman as Himself
- Jim Rome as Himself
- Patrick Bristow as Walt
- Lauren Sanchez as Herself
- Dan Patrick as Officer Jack Pugh
- Christopher Neiman as Big Ear Cop
- Ed Lauter as Duane
- Sean Salisbury as Vic
- Rob "Revolution" Moore as Gavin
- Big Boy as Jesse
- Marc S. Ganis as Lorenzo
- Shane Ralston as Bradlee
- Courteney Cox as Lena (uncredited)
The movie was filmed at the New Mexico State Penitentiary on Route 14, Santa Fe, New Mexico. The football game at the end of the film was filmed at Murdock Stadium at the El Camino College in Torrance, California. The car chase scene was filmed whereabouts in Long Beach, California. Other parts of the film were filmed in Los Angeles and New Mexico. The golf course scene was filmed at Lost Canyons Golf Club in Simi Valley, California.
The film was released on the same day as Dreamworks Animation’s Madagascar, both movies starred Chris Rock.
The film did well at the box office. Its $47.6 million opening weekend was the largest of Sandler's career and only second to The Day After Tomorrow as the largest opening by a movie that was not #1. The film would go on to gross $158.1 million in the United States and Canada and $190 million worldwide. It was the highest-grossing film produced by MTV Films, until it was surpassed by Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters. Despite the large number of remakes released at the theaters, it's worth noting that The Longest Yard is the highest grossing comedy remake of the modern box office era (from 1980 on).
Critical response Edit
On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 32% based on 165 reviews, with an average rating of 4.8/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "This Yard has some laughs but missing from this remake is the edginess of the original." On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 48 out of 100, based on 35 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews". According to CinemaScore, audiences gave the film a grade of "A−" on an A+ to F scale.
Roger Ebert, in the critical minority with this title, gave it a "Thumbs Up", defending it later in his Chicago Sun-Times review as a film that "...more or less achieves what most of the people attending it will expect." In the print review, Ebert beseeches his readers to "...seek out a movie you could have an interesting conversation about", citing films not in wide release such as Dominion: Prequel to the Exorcist and Kontroll, until finally encouraging his readers to "drop any thought of seeing anything else instead" if they can see Crash.
- "The Longest Yard (2005)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved February 27, 2018.
- "Filming at Lost Canyons Golf Club". Lost Canyons. December 1, 2014.
- "Comedy Remake". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved December 1, 2014.
- "CinemaScore". CinemaScore. Retrieved 2015-07-15.
- Ebert, Roger (May 26, 2005). "Reviews: The Longest Yard". rogerebert.com.