Written by / 8/27/2011 / No comments / , ,

OUR IDIOT BROTHER

title: OUR IDIOT BROTHER
year: 2011
cast: Paul Rudd, Zooey Deschanel, Emily Mortimer, Kathryn Hahn, T.J. Miller
rating: ***

Imagine if the loyal, floppy family pooch became a human and inhabited the lives of its owners… Well here you have it. Idiot Brother Paul Rudd is an oblivious, kindhearted hippie sent to jail for selling pot to a uniformed police officer (entrapment, anyone?). When he gets out, he lives with each of his three sisters, all in various types of relationships: one married, one gay, one a single writer with a platonic roommate. The humor is subtle, and not always laugh out loud funny, but things get interesting when Brother shares stuff he’s learned about each of his sibling’s relationships: putting their love lives in jeopardy. Our hero’s hollow vibe, counterbalancing the neurotic personalities around him, works to eventually teach his siblings that he’s not the idiot after all. A bearded, shaggy Rudd (resembling Ben Affleck doing an L.A. Woman era Jim Morrison impersonation) paints this likable, quirky dude with an intentionally lazy performance, allowing the other characters, including an ex girlfriend keeping his dog hostage and a nephew in need of a real friend, to catch up to his breezy rhythm. So in this summer of big budget mediocrity, this kind of mellow idiocy works just fine, despite the sporadic cliches. And in not trying for greatness, it remains simply good, and thus entertaining, throughout.
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