Mixed or average reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 21
  2. Negative: 4 out of 21
  1. 63
    Offers dumb fun without apology.
  2. 63
    Arguably Sandler's most enjoyable motion picture to date, but it's still far from a masterpiece.
  3. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    No one does deranged quite like Kathy Bates (the film's running gag involving Bates and the delicacies of Cajun cuisine is hilarious).
  4. This escapist comedy is so cheerfully outlandish that it's hard to resist, and so good-hearted that it's genuinely endearing.
  5. 60
    The Perrier of dumb-and-dumber movies, an effervescent idiot's delight that burbles from the wellspring of silliness inside star Adam Sandler's head.
  6. An unabashed wallow in the moronic humor of Adam Sandler.
  7. 50
    As funny as it can be, this underdawg comedy isn't much more than Sandler's golf-oriented "Happy Gilmore" with a Cajun accent. [6 November 1998, p. 10E]
  8. Reviewed by: John Haslett Cuff
    As a satire on the only true religion of the American South -- football -- The Waterboy is a delight.
  9. 50
    It's not "Billy Madison," quite, but The Waterboy is still pure Sandler. If you like that sort of thing.
  10. Reviewed by: Glenn Lovell
    This yahoos-on-the-bayou farce is neither inventive nor outrageous enough.
  11. Reviewed by: Caroline Westbrook
    Perfectly watchable, undemanding fun, but you can't help thinking that a slightly darker tone would have gone a very long way.
  12. 40
    Of course it's dumb, but every 10 minutes or so, it's also pretty funny.
  13. Reviewed by: Joshua Klein
    A mess of bad timing, bad jokes, and bad ideas so lame that even Sandler's idiot man-child mugging can't enliven the proceedings.
  14. Follows a leadenly predictable path that will be more than familiar to anyone who's seen a recent sports movie, or any Sandler movie.
  15. Another film about . . . a cretinous, grating loser.
  16. 40
    Geek-triumphs-after-all comedies can be charming, but in this one the triumphing begins so early it's hard to feel for the geek.
  17. 25
    Sandler is making a tactical error when he creates a character whose manner and voice has the effect of fingernails on a blackboard, and then expects us to hang in there for a whole movie.
  18. Reviewed by: David Kehr
    Working a lisping Southern accent that sounds like Truman Capote on Seconal, Sandler plays Bobby Boucher, a swamp-dwelling Cajun. [6 November 1998, p. 56]
  19. Reviewed by: Ron Wells
    A stupid summer movie.
  20. Becomes yet another lame sports farce.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 63 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 16
  2. Negative: 2 out of 16
  1. Mar 1, 2014
    Adam Sandler's voice in this movie is like nails on a chalkboard! It's so bad! One of the worst comedies I've ever seen! So bad on so many levels. Here's to hoping his next film won't be as obnoxious. Full Review »
  2. Jun 20, 2013
    This film is a tad overrated by many Sandler fans, but looking at what he has done lately it's a masterpiece. It definitely has some funny moments, but the accent gets annoying. Full Review »
  3. Mar 9, 2013