In 1978, five childhood friends win their junior high school basketball championship. Afterwards, they celebrate at a rented lake house. The friends' coach, whom they nickname "Buzzer" (Blake Clark), encourages them to live their lives in a similar way to how they played the game. Thirty years later, Lenny (Adam Sandler) has become an ambitious Hollywood talent agent with his wife, fashion designer Roxanne (Salma Hayek), and his three children—daughter Becky (Alexys Nicole Sanchez) and two sons Greg (Jake Goldberg) and Keith (Cameron Boyce). The boys act very spoiled in his vicinity, much to his annoyance. Eric (Kevin James) claims he is now a co-owner of a lawn furniture company, but is disappointed in his wife Sally (Maria Bello) for continuing to breastfeed Bean (Morgan Gingerich), one of his two children, the other being Donna (Ada-Nicole Sanger). Kurt (Chris Rock) is a stay-at-home father with two children, Andre and Charlotte (Nadji Jeter and China Anne McClain). His wife Deanne (Maya Rudolph), the primary breadwinner of the family, is pregnant with another child and shares the house with her mother (Ebony Jo-Ann). Rob (Rob Schneider), nicknamed Carrot, has been divorced three times and holds custody of his daughters Jasmine, Amber, and Bridget (Madison Riley, Jamie Chung, and Ashley Loren). His current wife, Gloria (Joyce Van Patten), is 30 years older than him. Marcus (David Spade) is a slacker and lothario. All five friends regularly harass each other in comedic fashion throughout the film: Lenny for being rich, Eric for being overweight, Kurt for being skinny and useless, Rob for his continuous use of the joke "Maize!" and for having a much older wife, and Marcus for being sexually juvenile.
The friends each find out that Buzzer has died, and reunite at their hometown with their families, a first in the three decades. Intending to pay tribute to Buzzer at a private funeral, Lenny rents the lake house for the 4th of July weekend for his friends to stay at. However, Roxanne has planned a fashion show in Milan, forcing Lenny to retreat. While at the lake house, he becomes annoyed at how his sons are playing video games instead of being outdoors, and pushes them to play outside along with his friend's children. At a local restaurant, Lenny talks to his old nemesis, Dickie (Colin Quinn), who is still bitter towards Lenny for an error in the match, where his shot shouldn't have counted since he allegedly had his foot on the outside line. With this, Dickie challenges Lenny and his friends to a rematch, but he declines when commenting on Dickie's health. The next day, Buzzer's ashes are spread in the woods while Rob becomes depressed, lamenting his failed marriages, and later warns the arrival of his three daughters from the previous marriages. After having to deal with Jasmine, he then relaxes with his friends partaking in fishing. After joking on Rob, the others elect to cheer him up with a game of arrow roulette. Rob wins by staying in the circle for the longest time, but the arrow pierces his foot when it flies back down. Rob then snaps at Gloria for using a maize-covered poultice. That night, Lenny manages to get the kids interested in talking on cup-phones and Roxanne accidentally reveals herself to be the "Tooth Fairy" when Becky listens in. Now happy that they are enjoying a similar kind of young fun that he had, Lenny proceeds to install an extensive cup-phone network in the house.
Roxanne settles on staying at the lake house over going to the fashion show. The friends decide to visit a water park, where Bean learns to drink milk out of a carton and Marcus repeatedly flirts with Jasmine and Amber, having bought them skimpy bikinis. Rob kicks a ride attendant down a water slide when the latter insults Bridget for being less attractive than her sisters. Eric ignores Donna's warning about a chemical in the kiddie pool that turns urine blue, and chaos results when the urine is revealed. The spouses spot and attempt to attract a muscleman, but he is laughed off when revealed to have a high-pitched voice. Later, Lenny and the group go to the zip line and meet Dickie again, this time with his own group of friends and former teammates, including Wiley (Steve Buscemi), who overshoots the swimming pool sliding down the zip line by his feet, and slams into a shopping kiosk. He is hospitalized as a result. Lenny teaches his son how to shoot a perfect shot during basketball, and the friends then end the night by sharing a dance with their spouses. The next day, Roxanne picks up Lenny's phone and confronts him on lying about canceling their flight trip before she agreed on staying. Eventually, everyone concedes into admitting their own truths about how they feel with their lives. On their final day at the lake house, Lenny accepts the rematch once and for all, and plays against their former opponents. At the game-deciding shot, Lenny purposely misses to allow Dickie's team to get a proper win. Before the end of the film, Marcus plays another game of arrow roulette, but with a larger crowd of people this time. Everyone fearfully takes off, and Wiley (who is still paralyzed) gets his foot impaled by the arrow.
Filming commenced in Essex County, Massachusetts, in August, 2009.
Grown Ups grossed $162 million in the United States and $109.4 million in other territories for a worldwide gross of $271.4 million against a production budget of $80 million. Happy with the gross, Adam Sandler showed his appreciation by buying brand-new Maserati sports cars for his four co-stars. The film won at the 2011 MTV Movie Awards for the "Best Line from a Movie" category, which it won for the line "I want to get chocolate wasted!", delivered by Becky, played by Alexys Nycole Sanchez.
On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 10% based on 164 reviews and an average rating of 3.3/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Grown Ups' cast of comedy vets is amiable, but they're let down by flat direction and the scattershot, lowbrow humor of a stunted script." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 30 out of 100 based on 32 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B" on an A+ to F scale.
Connie Ogle of the Miami Herald referred to it as "the perfect poster child for this maddening summer of movie mediocrity." Rick Groen of the Globe and Mail criticized what he saw as blatant commercialism, saying the cast "lob[bed] gags they surely disdain at an audience they probably despise while reserving their own laughter for that off-camera dash all the way to the bank." Richard Roeper went as far as to say that it was "a blight upon the bright canvas of American cinema", and that he hated it. Tom Long of the Detroit News called it "trite comedy" and "total garbage." On the other end of the spectrum, Lisa Kennedy of the Denver Post called it "crude and decent-hearted" and "easy, breezy, predictable."
Rob Schneider was nominated for a Razzie Award for Worst Supporting Actor for the film, but lost the trophy to Jackson Rathbone for both The Last Airbender and The Twilight Saga: Eclipse.
Grown Ups was released on DVD and Blu-ray Disc on November 9, 2010.
A sequel, titled Grown Ups 2, was released on July 12, 2013. Dennis Dugan, the director of the first film, returned as director. The main cast, including Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Chris Rock, David Spade, Salma Hayek, Maya Rudolph, Maria Bello and Steve Buscemi reprised their roles, except Rob Schneider. New cast includes Andy Samberg, Taylor Lautner and Patrick Schwarzenegger. The sequel follows Lenny Feder as he relocates his family back to the small town where he and his friends grew up. Like its predecessor, Grown Ups 2 received very poor reviews but was still a box office hit.