19 March 2010

The Puffy Chair (Jay Duplass, 2005)

I've always shied away from watching any of these mumblecore movies because I assumed they'd be about these sort of bland, bourgeois, generic rebels that seem to pop up as friends of friends all too often. I thought Humpday seemed decent enough so I gave this one a chance, if only for cultural literacy. I have to say that while this movie was more or less exactly what I expected from it it was a little more interesting. Almost like anthropology or something. I always wondered what those people were like when left to their own devices and I thought this movie was really informative about that. It crossed my mind several times that this movie would have been a lot stronger if it were shorter by about a third. That'd make it just under an hour and I think that's about as much as the story needed. The acting seemed hit or miss. The brother in particular seemed kind of weak. He's also an annoying character but, having unfortunately had occasion to meet these kinds of people, he struck me as pretty authentic. There were some things I liked about this movie but I'm so judgmental when it comes to this breed of people, for whatever reason, and that distaste is too fresh in my mind to achieve any critical distance. The girlfriend is likable enough in that "I feel really bad for not liking you because you seem so likable but I just can't do it" kind of way, whereas the protagonist is endearing in that "This is the kind of straight guy I'd like to spend one night with just so I'd know what it was like and then never see again" sort of way. I guess it has me craving an old Dogme movie or something. C-

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