Anywhoooo. . . To make a long story short, I liked this film. I had only seen one Duplass Bros (After watching Book Of Eli and Daybreakers this past week, I’m beginning to think that only siblings make movies) film before; The pseudo-slasher flick Baghead. And while I liked the unpredictable nature of that film’s narrative, I found some of the characters and awkward tonal shifts to be a bit irritating after awhile. And while this film shared the same sense of unpredictability, it’s grounded in a way that feels more like playing fair.
It is funny, especially after watching the Sundance intro telling me to “Rebel!”, that I’m watching a movie starring John C Reilly, Marisa Tomei and Jonah Hill; produced by the Scotts; and with a plot that just as easily could have come from a Happy Madison production. The thing that makes this movie different is in what it doesn’t do. It could be a gross-out comedy, with the requisite poop and masturbation jokes, but it isn’t (Well, ok, they have one masturbation joke. But they get it out of the way early!). Or, it could have the “wacky” comedy plot, with Reilly being one week away from selling a book about dating single mothers when “everything goes wrong!”. But it doesn’t go there either. Everything that happens, could happen. And it’s that grounding in reality, mixed with a more heartfelt sensibility than you usually see in these type of films, that makes it genuinely emotional.
I think that whatever studio picked this up could have a nice little success on their hands, if they sell it right. Don’t pitch this as a wacky comedy in the Talladega Nights vein, cuz it ain’t that. Like it or not, this is going to get lumped under the Judd Apatow-style umbrella, so you may as well pitch to that audience. Just let them know that this is a lot funnier than Funny People.