Going Overboard (1989)

1 Overall Score
Story: 1/10
Acting: 1/10
Visuals: 1/10


Unbelievably bad

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Going Overboard

Studio:  Trimark Pictures

Genre(s):  Comedy/B-Movie

Release Date(s):  May 11, 1989

MPAA Rating:  R


Nothing says wacky like Billy Zane as King Neptune and Adam Sandler!

Shecky Moskowitz (Adam Sandler) is a cruise ship waiter with dreams.  He’s going to be a stand-up comedian…he just has to get his break.  When the ship comedian Dickie Diamond (Scott LaRose) accidentally gets locked in a bathroom and is believed dead, Shecky might just get his chance.  Unfortunately, General Manuel Noriega (Burt Young) is targeting the ship, and despite encouragement from King Neptune (Billy Zane) and Milton Berle, Shecky has a lot to learn about comedy.

Directed by Valerie Breiman, Going Overboard was Adam Sandler’s first film.  The movie was met with largely negative reviews and is usually not even acknowledged by Adam Sandler who has put the film down as well.


Dang…even Billy Bob looks lame…

I’m not a big Adam Sandler fan, and the fact Adam Sandler doesn’t even endorse this film is a problem…and wisely so.  Going Overboard might go down as one of the worst movies I have seen.

The movie constantly breaks the fourth wall from the start of the film.  Sandler’s character announces that the film is cheap and that you are basically following him.  This leads to believed cleverness, but instead, it really is unfunny and a bore.  The movie is tedious and feels long despite a short running time.  I don’t know if it even qualifies as “so bad it is good”.

Sandler has no idea what he’s going.  The movie’s meta-style makes it tough for him to find a balance of the movie.  In addition to Sandler, the movie does have some star power with it (surprisingly).  Billy Zane plays King Neptune who encourages Sandler and Sandler meets Milton Berle in a dream sequence (he must have needed a quick check).  Billy Bob Thorton has a small role as a heckler and Rocky-vet Burt Young plays Manuel Noriega who sends terrorists after the ship (for real).


Milton Berle must have needed some quick cash…

The movie is ultra-low budget.  They had access to a cruise ship and beauty queens and tried to craft a story around it.  Like the concept, they intentionally make it cheap, but that doesn’t make it funny.

Going Overboard is painful…and not even promotional material can make it better.  If you don’t like Adam Sandler, it can even make you feel a bit sorry for him.  The movie was originally released in 1989 but got a wider release once Adam Sandler became popular on SNL.  I can imagine that it probably should have stayed buried…or the obligatory “out to sea” joke.

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Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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