STUDIO: First Independent Pictures
MSRP: $26.99
RUNNING TIME: 95 minutes
• Audio Commentary with Douglas Coupland and Paul Fox
• Video Pop-Ups
• Extended Scenes
• Poster Gallery
• Lincoln Clarke’s Photo Gallery
• Soundtrack Listing
• Recipe for Pot Brownies

The Pitch

Pot inspires young man to be a better person.

The Humans

Paolo Costanzo, Steph Song, JR Bourne, Aidan Devine, Tom Butler, Susan Hogan, Tara Wilson and Katharine Isabelle

The Nutshell

Douglas Coupland has spent the last fifteen years or so, writing about how Generation X lived and thought. Taking an original script set in his hometown of Vancouver, Coupland and Paul Fox have created a film with the Coupland charm and none of the heart. That might be a little harsh, but we’ve seen Coupland write these characters before. The hapless loser who discovers that his safety zones aren’t what he perceived to them to be. The weird killer whale phone, the Vancouver culture and that damn palm tree all play back into what’s becoming Coupland cliché.

The Lowdown

Everything’s Gone Green is a look into the sudden collapse of Ryan’s life. Ryan (Paolo Costanzo) has nothing left in the world; he finds a job with the local lottery. While spotting a beached whale near where he lives, he meets a young woman named Ming. The problem is that Ming has a boyfriend. The bigger problem is that her boyfriend is an asshole of Zabka stature that is too busy designing golf courses. The two misfits soon become friends and it’s not long before we’re back into Ryan’s world.

Paolo Costanzo knocks it out of the park as Ryan. But, he does such a great job as our laidback hero that he’s easy to ignore. Ming’s boyfriend Bryce (JR Bourne) outshines Ryan many times, as he drops some Darwinist business advice on us. Then, there’s Ryan’s buddy and his endless chain of Dairy spots. When Ryan figures out that his best friend is cultivating the best marijuana in Vancouver, everything comes to a head.

Little did Bryce know that smoking Swamp Thing’s taint would eventually transform you into Daniel Baldwin.

Ryan needs money, Ryan wants Ming and Ryan needs to find a way to help his buddy move the profits from the marijuana sales. So, Ryan decides to take a risk and funnel the drug profits through his Lottery job. Watching Ryan try to find peace through his photography and new undertakings is frustrating, as you can tell that he’s not at ease with his new station in life. You start to sympathize with the guy, even when it seems like he’s whining or in the midst of plodding conversation with his few friends. The character hits a little too close to home for a lot of people that I know and sometimes I just don’t feel like seeing something like that onscreen.

Ever since the fire, Fangoria has been desperate to get their magazine back on track. Watch now, as we prepare to go inside the haunted remains of this beached whale.

Every film can’t be fantasy, but playing your cards so close to the mundane kills the enjoyment that a lot of potential viewers can take from a story. If you can handle that, then you’ll probably enjoy the film a lot more than I did. The nature of trying to tie a satisfying conclusion on a film that seemed to be lackadaisical for the purpose of being lackadaisical didn’t feel earnest to me. There are plenty of Coupland fans that read the site and they’ll probably take use with my bias towards his material. But, I liked Microserfs if that counts for anything.

The Package

Everything’s Gone Green arrives on DVD with an impressive disc. The A/V Quality is dynamic and expressive for a smaller film from Canada. The Dolby Digital 5.1 track delivers a solid sound wave across my Home Theater. The audio is clear as hell, while the transfer is pretty clear too. The transfer gets points off for not having any depth, while being clear and focused on the primary action.

Road Trip, Josie and the Pussycats and Joey. I really need to stop letting Madame Cleo plan my career.

The special features run the gamut of the absurd to the practical. Sure, the pot brownies recipe was funny and might make for some delectable desserts. But, what’s the point? Did they really need more feature to pad out the nine gigs on the disc? There are the Pop-Up videos of some assorted scenes along with a few extended scenes that go nowhere. The Photo Gallery is a nice touch, as it allows the viewer to take a look at a visual device that allowed for Ryan to hang the narrative together.

The commentary is the best special feature, as Fox and Coupland have a lot to say about the film in less than two hours. Fox talks about how he went about translating an original Coupland story into something that work on film. He also drops the technical knowledge, which seems to suggest that he was making a more visually interesting movie than what came out. Coupland chimes in with some thoughts about the construction of the story and the certain tricks he had to pull out of his hat to play to the nature of film. Both men carried the commentary, which could’ve been easily bungled had either one of them not been present.

The stare of Paolo Costanzo is enough to make anyone’s Pineal Gland go all From Beyond.

I’ve heard a ton of people call this film the Canadian Garden State. Such simple terms help to describe the lack of plot development and the perpetual self-absorption of the main characters. But, it also does the film a disservice by trying to place Coupland’s work in the broad understanding of Emo kids who only visit their bookstore chains to listen to the latest My Chemical Romance album. The Coupland fans have already come out in full force to get behind the film, while everyone else has let it slip by them. I’d recommend a rental for curiosity’s sake, but there’s no reason to go out of your way to pick it up.

6.8 out of 10