- Accidental Aesop: The best way to get a selfish, destructive drunk to stop terrorizing innocent citizens is to feel bad for his unwillingness to mourn his parents.
- Awesome Art: The one unanimous praise that the movie gets is for its incredibly fluid hand-drawn animation, created by many of the the artists who also worked on The Iron Giant, hence the similar art styles.
- Awesome Music:
- "Intervention Song" (aka "Let It Out, Davey") despite being one of the most gratuitous scenes of Product Placement in the entire movie, is incredibly catchy. The Foot Locker guy, voiced by Peter Dante, has some wicked pipes. There's also the Mood Whiplash Tear Jerker coda in which Davey finally reads the card his deceased parents wrote him and breaks down in tears.
- "Bum Biddy", which comes at the climax and features a lovely three-part harmony.Jennifer: ♪Tonight Whitey was counting on this town // to show that we care. But the first time he really needed us, we weren't there~! ♪
Benjamin: ♪And on Christmas Eve and the last night of Hanukkah~!♪
Davey: ♪It's juuuust noooot - fair-air-air-air!♪
- Base-Breaking Character: Whitey. Most consider his nails-on-a-chalkboard voice to be the reason they hate this movie, while others are more forgiving since he is just such a Nice Guy.
- Broken Base: The animation. Nobody will deny that this is a very well-animated film, especially since it was one of the last major American hand-drawn animated films, but there's some debate whether its dissonance from the vulgar humor makes it funnier or just awkward.
- Crosses the Line Twice: Davey insulting an obese boy by calling him "jelly jugs" isn't funny. Whitey trying to remedy the situation by assuring the boy that he "has very nice boobs", however, is.
- Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: Davey is so unabashedly awful throughout the film that the only possible way to make him seem sympathetic is to make the townspeople even worse to Whitey.
- Designated Hero: Davey, of course. He is an asshole to just about everybody and commits a lot of crimes such as vandalism, theft and assault. His eventual HeelFace Turn feels incredibly hollow as a result.
- Ensemble Dark Horse: Eleanor for being as nice as Whitey while also having a slightly less obnoxious voice that actually makes her sound like a different character. Not to mention she can kick your ass if she needs to.
- Hilarious in Hindsight:
- You know that scene where the brands come alive and give Davey a huge What the Hell, Hero? speech? Well, it seems that someone decided to turn that scene into a movie.
- One of the biggest criticisms for this movie was how Davey does not deal with his loss the way most people really do, and rather than be introverted and antisocial is a troublemaker. Years later, Adam Sandler would star in Reign Over Me, one of his few dramatic roles where he was hugely praised for his sincere portrayal of someone who lost their whole family to a tragedy.
- Memetic Mutation: "My hand is in your mouth, kitty, but I don't feel no teeth."
- Moe: Whitey. Even with his unbearable voice, he's just so kind that you can't help but have a little love for him.
- Nightmare Fuel: The brief but viscerally uncomfortable image of Davey screaming GOOD! YOUR HOUSE SUCKS! at Whitey, after he bans Davey from his house. When he yells, his face is drawn with more anatomy for emphasis, almost looking like he came straight out of The Christmas Tree, and his voice is downright hateful. It perfectly represents that horrible feeling you get when someone is yelling at you.
- Older than You Think: Whitey actually first appeared in Adam Sandler's 1999 album and Little Nicky, played by Dana Carvey.
- Squick: The scene with the shit eating deer. It's as disgusting as it sounds.
- Tainted by the Preview: The previews show off Whitey speaking and the deer with poop in their teeth.
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
- It isn't necessarily that Whitey is a bad character, so much as the movie tries to have it both ways by depicting him as someone whose kindness was never properly recognized because everyone unfairly picked on him for his appearance and odd personality... while also taking every opportunity to make cruel jokes about his appearance, odd personality and then some (the movie literally ends with a joke about him having a seizure), certainly not helped by the grating voice Adam Sandler gives him.
- Davey's Freudian Excuse, meanwhile, doesn't amount to much more than "He had nice parents, and then he didn't." The movie does say that he was too young to really understand it when it happened, but not why he would have taken so long to come to terms with it. There're no indication that he was ever told not to express his feelings about it, by his parents, friends or other adults, or even that the foster homes he went to afterward were abusive, thus making him more bitter about it. Had there been more to the story than just his parents dying when he was young, it might have had a little more bite.
- Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Davey is meant to be a Jerkass Woobie, but comes off more as an outright Jerkass with little to no woobiness, and also comes a breathe away from being a borderline Hate Sink. Yes, he eventually learns to be a better person, but he also never faces any consequences for his nasty behavior or selfish attitude. It doesn't help that even after he comes to terms with the death of his parents and finally grieves for them properly, his first instinct is to assault the officers who try to take him in and then attempt to skip town in order to avoid any negative consequences. It takes a "Hanukkah miracle" for him to actually go back and help Whitey. The worst punishment he gets is a self-inflicted wedgie. Worst of all, his bad attitude is said to have come entirely from his parents' deaths when he was a child, but his parents don't even come up until their deaths are mentioned, which doesn't really communicate a deep, profound love for them so much as a decades-long tantrum that his nice things got taken away.
- Uncertain Audience: The main reason why the film ending up bombing as hard as it did. Besides being a traditionally-animated film released in a time where those kinds of films are on the verge of death as viewers at the time considered them too-kiddie compared to the CG-animated films from Pixar and DreamWorks Animation, it's a typical PG-13 rated Adam Sandler comedy, making it too crude and inappropriate for younger viewers. Yet, at the same time, the heavy amount of toilet humor made it too juvenile for adults.
- Vindicated by History: While no one is gonna go for bat for this movie, it is one of the few mainstream holiday movies that deals with Chanukah, not to mention it being one of the few traditionally animated movies at the time, with the animation being one of the few things that was unanimously agreed to be good, so it has some millennial fans who appreciate it for those qualities, if nothing else.
- What Do You Mean, It's Not for Kids?: Yes, it's an wacky animated holiday musical rife with juvenile toilet humor, but it is most definitely not for children, what with profanity, alcohol abuse, mean-spirited humor and deers eating crap. Doesn't help that in Canada, the movie's rated PG, where a 14A would have been more like it. Also, expect certain retailers to put it near family-friendly movies as well.
- WTH, Casting Agency?: Adam Sandler as Whitey. He gives him a voice that's both irritating and unfitting for the character. Not to mention, his voice barely even sounds like a different character when he's doing both Whitey's voice and Davey's voice.
- The Woobie: Whitey. Whether you like him or not, it is sad to feel like you don't exist by having someone you've been trying to make into a better person tell you so.
YMMV / Eight Crazy Nights