Jack Nicholson should never retire from acting. In the case that he does feel like hanging up that devilish, 10 mile wide smile of his and quit the acting biz, then I’d absolutely love for him to begin offering anger management therapy for all of us enraged, pent up, people from Jersey. I could deal without stopping my car in the middle of a bridge and singing “I Feel Pretty” from West Side Story, but perhaps since Jack’s a fellow Jersey guy, he’d be able to offer me some insight. The deep breath and count to 10 thing just ain’t cuttin’ it. I’ll settle for just watching the DVD of Anger Management, which proves to be an amusing distraction, albeit, one that can only momentarily remedy my agitation.
Premiering to mixed reviews, I feel that Anger Management succeeds thanks to its fine cast including Sandler, Nicholson, the ever sexy Marisa Tomei, Woody Harrelson, Kevin Nealon, John Turturro, Luis Guzman and a host of awesome cameos. To top it off, they even managed to throw in a reference to New Jersey! In this scene, Andrew (Allen Covert), a well endowed douchebag who’s crazy about Marisa Tomei, is enjoying a drink with her as Dave (Sandler) walks into the bar:
DAVE: “…Not that crowded here tonight, you would think it would be packed.”
ANDREW: “Actually, I rented the place out. I just figured it would be more fun if it was just us Brown alumni. Where did you go to college again, Dave?”
DAVE: “Trenton Community College.”
While there are several colleges in Trenton, such as Mercer County Community College and Thomas Edison State College, there is no actual school named Trenton Community College. Before changing its name to The College of New Jersey and moving to Ewing, NJ, it was named Trenton State College.
I identified with this film, because all Dave (Sandler) needed to do to avoid getting wrapped up in anger therapy was know how to keep his mouth shut. To the surprise of no one, that is something that Jersey people have an insanely hard time doing. Growing up, all I heard from teachers, and on TV was that we need to “express ourselves,” and “speak our minds,” because after all, “you are entitled to your opinion!” Then the minute we open our mouths to do that we’re automatically accused of being rabble-rousers. Who am I kidding? I wouldn’t take an anger management class if Jack Nicholson was teaching it in full Joker makeup and costume. Well, that’s a blatant lie and a total exaggeration. But not having some sort of edge or chip on your shoulder sort of seems like you might as well be spayed or neutered.
Nicholson grew up in Neptune City, NJ and attended Manasquan High School so it would be a fine way to give back to the community. I could see Jack now in his slyest demeanor…
JACK: “Does anyone have any questions about today’s lesson?”
STUDENT: “Yeah I do…what about that time you were on a murderous bloodthirsty rampage holding an axe and trying to kill the innocent Shelly Duvall? You seemed really fucking incensed! What was that all about?”
JACK: “Acting my good man…merely some fine acting. NOW GET THE FUCK OUT OF HERE! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!”