The Do-Deca-PentathlonFeature Film |
Further proof that low-budget indies can also be formulaic.
After a couple of higher profile films with big-name Hollywood actors, The Duplass brothers return to their low-budget indie roots, but the results are disheartening. It's the same formula: Longstanding dysfunctional family strife, portrayed mostly for laughs, edging over into heartfelt drama, only to dispense with emotional honesty by wrapping things up way too neatly. Mark (Steve Zissis) is a schlubby, depressed 9-to-5er who takes his improbably gorgeous wife Stephanie (Jennifer Lafleur) and sullen adolescent son Hunter (Reid Williams) to visit his mom (Julie Vorus) for his birthday. Estranged ne'er-do-well older brother Jeremy (Mark Kelly) crashes the party, and goads Mark into participating in the titular childhood sporting competition. While Hunter looks on with increasing interest, Stephanie repeatedly tries to stop Mark. Despite the rationality of her position, she comes off as a killjoy scold, because this is yet another movie about the joys of being a manchild. Sloppiness--from a lackadaisical attitude about the actual number of events depicted, to the handheld camera occasionally going out of focus, to the most unconvincing "professional" poker tournament ever depicted--is the order of the day. Kelly gives his role a welcome gruff edge, and Do-Deca generates a few laughs, but it all feels slapped together, and it never really makes a case for anyone caring about these thinly drawn, silly characters.
|The Do-Deca-Pentathalon Trailer|