Our Idiot Brother, dir. Jesse Peretz, scr. Evgenia Peretz, David Schisgall, st. Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Banks, Zooey Deschanel, Emily Mortimer, Steve Coogan
Judging by the whimsical score and Rudd's doofy portrayal of the titular idiot, I presume this film holds lofty ambitions of cutesy disarmament, as loveable dickhead Ned Rockliffe proceeds to wreck havoc on the lives of his three self-absorbed sisters with hiLARious results. But it turns out there's not much going on here either in the way of laughs or precious insights into how muttonheads have feelings too. Christ, even Forrest Gump went to war for his country. When the entirely predictable moment comes when the sisters realise the error of their ways while their brother's in prison, do they go and see him en masse for a heart-to-heart? Do they write him a letter explaining how they never truly valued his unconditional optimism? No, they steal his ex-girlfriend's dog and send it to him. How lame is that? It's like if I treated my brother like shit all his life and then sent him a boxset of Spooks byway of reconciliation. AND THEN the film becomes just smug enough to include bloopers over the closing credits, which made me audibly harrumph at the audacity. In my last review of Crazy, Stupid, Love I posited that great actors can compensate for a lousy script; apparently that's not always the case.