OUR IDIOT BROTHER
MOVIE: **1/2 (out of 5)
DVD EXPERIENCE: **1/2 (out of 5)
BY KEVIN CARR
I missed “Our Idiot Brother” when it came to theaters, mainly because it got lost in the shuffle of releases without a screening. And that’s a shame because it’s a better movie than the trailer and buzz let on.
The story follows Ned (Paul Rudd), who is a kind-hearted but often too honest and trusting middle-aged man. After serving time for selling pot to a uniformed officer, Ned moves in with his sisters Miranda (Elizabeth Banks), Natalie (Zooey Deschanel) and Liz (Emily Mortimer). The sisters pass him around to ease the burden, and Ned ends up throwing all their lives into turmoil. However, the chaos he brings serves to have them reevaluate certain things in their lives.
The thing that really carries “Our Idiot Brother” is the cast. Rudd is perfectly at ease playing the smiling idiot, and the sisters are cast perfectly. Sure, the roles are very much stock characters for Banks, Deschanel and Mortimer, but that’s what makes them so likeable even when they’re all three assholes. Such is the case with families, and this helps bring the dysfunction to life without being caustic.
“Our Idiot Brother” isn’t a perfect movie. It falls into traps that many of these ensemble pieces do, as well as the loveable idiot stories we’ve seen quite a few times. As nice and sweet as Ned is, it makes sense that people have problems dealing with him. Additionally, his sisters are even more dysfunctional than he is, so that can get wearing at times.
But the movie has a good sense of flow. The sometimes mediocre and rote script never falls too far in quality because of the charm of the cast.
Not a whole lot of people saw “Our Idiot Brother” in the theaters, and that’s a shame. Hopefully it will have better legs on DVD and Blu-ray.
The DVD comes with a making-of featurette, a commentary by director Jesse Peretz as well as deleted and extended scenes.