Photo Credit: Robyn Von Swank
Sundance Film Festival
Director: Jordan Voght-Roberts
I knew this movie was going to be painful to watch as soon as the ‘70s or ‘80s power-pop intro song started. It seemed out of place, forced—As did most of the dialogue in the film. A couple of high school friends, Joe Toy (Nick Robinson) and Patrick Keenan (Gabriel Basso) decide that their parents are such a drag that the only option is to build their own house in the forest and live there. Of course, it isn’t as simple as they think, hunting is hard, they miss society, etc. It’s all just too much, though—the witty, “current” dialogue is forced, Patrick’s parents are too over-the-top protective and annoying and the “weird friend” Biaggio (Moises Arias) is to ridiculous of a character to take seriously. The soundtrack is too pushy and literal, the characters do nonsensical things (Jumping in front of a snake to save the girl? Just get the snake! Bury the dead snake because other snakes will smell the venom? Come on!) and the 15-year-old boys’ beards look super fake. There was nothing sympathetic about the main characters, and I could go on all day about what is wrong with this one, but there are a few good moments. Erin Moriarty as Kelly, the tip of the Joe-Patrick love triangle, gives a surprisingly good performance, probably the best in the film. As does Nick Offerman as Joe’s father—he’s still basically Ron Swanson, but everything that comes out of his mouth is pure deadpan hillarity.
TIme: 1.25, 9:00 PM Venue: Tower Theatre, SLC
TIme: 1.26, 11:30 AM Venue: Prospector Square Theatre, Park City