Critics hated Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston's 'shamelessly gaudy' 'Murder Mystery' — even though it broke Netflix viewing records

NetflixAdam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston previously starred together in the 2011 rom-com ‘Just Go With It.’
  • Netflix‘s latest original film “Murder Mystery” premiered last Friday – and, as reported by Variety today, was streamed by over 30 million households in its first three days, breaking viewing records for the streaming service.
  • The film stars Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston as a blue-collar couple who impulsively travel to Europe, but get mixed up in a murder upon arrival.
  • While “Murder Mystery” may have gotten plenty of streams, critics positively hated the film, calling it “generic” and “lazy and uninspired trash.”
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Netflix’s original film “Murder Mystery” was streamed by more than 30 million households during its first three days, Variety reported – but that didn’t stop most critics from panning the film.

The film currently holds a 45% score on Rotten Tomatoes, with most critics taking issue with the cliché setup and Sandler’s acting.

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Variety’s Amy Nicholson says of the film’s stars Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler in her review: “The A-listers are cavorting on Netflix in a film that feels like a postcard from a past era.”

“‘Murder Mystery’ feels as shamelessly gaudy as paste jewellery,” Nicholson concludes, but praises Aniston’s performance, saying the “Friends” actress “sparkles like the real deal. “

Indiewire was even more critical in their review of the film. Senior film critic David Ehrlich called “Murder Mystery” “a weak Netflix comedy that seems perfectly at peace with its own awfulness,” and took particular issue with Sandler’s performance in the film, which Ehrlich called Sandler’s “laziest movie to date.”

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Ehrlich leveled serious criticisms at “Murder Mystery,” saying the film “is the kind of lazy and uninspired trash that can only be made by someone who knows that it doesn’t matter.”

Most other critics also gave “Murder Mystery” poor reviews. The New York Times’ Elisabeth Vincentelli called it “woeful” and “sluggish,” and CNN’s Brian Lowry described the Netflix original as “generic” and a “tired, bordering on tiresome endeavour.” RogerEbert.com writer Brian Tallerico described the film as “just entertaining enough to make you wish it was actually good.”

One of the few positive reviews for “Murder Mystery” came from Entertainment Weekly’s Leah Greenblatt, who called the Netflix film “fizzy-light” and praised the self-awareness of the film and its two stars.

“‘Murder Mystery’ seems to know from the first frame how silly it is, right down to the placeholder name,” she said.

Greenblatt, who called the film “more fun than it should be to watch,” ultimately concluded, “none of it ever really matters.”

“Even the big reveal of whodunit evaporates like so much morning mist over a villa – or like 100 minutes of zero-gravity Netflixing you can swig down like boxed Prosecco, and never have to think of again,” Greenblatt wrote.

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According to Variety, “Murder Mystery” was watched by close to 30.9 million households in the three days after it premiered on Friday. For reference, “Triple Frontier,” another original Netflix film starring Ben Affleck that premiered on March 13, was watched by over 52 million households during its first four weeks on the streaming service.

In terms of fan reviews, “Murder Mystery” currently holds a 5.8 out of 10 score on Metacritic. An audience score on Rotten Tomatoes isn’t yet available.

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