Thursday, 20 December 2012

Freeloaders Review

I had to see this movie.  It is produced by Broken Lizard and features my all time favourite music front man, Adam Duritz of Counting Crows.  I got pretty much what I expected as being a fan of the producers and Duritz, I had heard about it while it was in production.  It's really a straight to on-demand 77 minute classic that could have been produced by National Lampoon or some similar company.  So, going in, I kept my expectations low and I think that's why I enjoyed it.  It's about a group of people who have been living in Adam Duritz's house for years for free and, now that he plans to sell, they hatch hair-brained scheme after hair-brained scheme to raise the money to buy it and keep the evil Jane Seymour real estate agent from selling it.  It actually sounds like a half decent idea.

Even though Broken Lizard has yet to rediscover the comedic quality of Super Troopers (in fact, their efforts have gotten steadily worse since), they are still a group of guys that knows comedy and can make me laugh.  Had this film been fully made by the group, it could have been so much better.  Instead, they relegated themselves to the porn film crew that the freeloaders let use the house.  So you only get one scene where these guys can play off each other and use the comedic chemistry they are known for.  Had they been the freeloaders themselves, we could have had it through the whole movie.  After all, the individuals in the group of slackers each has their own quirky personality that is almost a caricature and that fits right into Broken Lizard's modus operandi.  It really was a wasted opportunity.

Instead, the route they took with other actors wasn't horrible but it wasn't great either.  The only one that really worked to its potential was that of Kevin Sussman (you know, Stuart from the Big Bang Theory) as the idiot, Henry.  The rest of the group tries hard to bring their own flakiness to their character and be funny and they all fall short; some shorter than others.  The romantic angle between the real estate assistant and the only moral person in the group is weak and should have either been beefed up or dropped entirely.  Outside of the official group of freeloaders, I do have to mention that the stuff surround Dave Foley was very funny.  Part of it is the fact that Foley is a fantastic comedian.  But it also has to do with how they played up his subtle pride at being Canadian and the fact that he can't even give away DVDs of of his movie, "The Wrong Guy" (which is a great comedy, by the way).

If you like the Broken Lizard style of comedy, it has just enough to keep you entertained (but only for the 77 minutes that it runs).  So see it if that's the case.  If that isn't your thing, don't bother.

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