We've had some chuckles here at The Buff over how the marketing of films is so often wide of the mark. We've seen Inglourious Basterds misrepresented as a Dirty dozen remake, Moon was pushed as some sort of sub Fight club 'imaginary friend' scenario and Drag me to hell just looked plain shite when it really wasn't.
In the absence of any large marketing campaign we're made to speculate. Is it in a mostly white case? Probably a light-hearted 'RomCom'. Holographic case? Definitely a horror, and if Kate Winslet is in it it's probably good but has no guns, cars and/or spaceships and as such is severely limited.
On this sort of a 'miseducated guess' basis, the first impressions of these two films were way off.
After the torture of One Hour Photo I wasn't sure if I could ever watch Robin Williams anymore, it was somehow too sad, too tragic and ultimately unrewarding. However, I came across this trailer and on the strength of that I gave World's greatest dad (2009) a chance. I must say, I'm glad I did.
At a time where people are calling The Hangover "Movie of the year" this film is a twisted gourd tossed in the fruit salad at some shitty Hollywood party. The writing is acerbic and uncomfortably truthful at times yet balanced with enough genuine humour and dark turns to make for a totally impressive film. Writer Bobcat Goldthwaite hasn't really been on my radar at all since I was 10 and confused by his screeching on Police Academy. He's well on there now with this, the best comedy I've seen well, so far this year anyway.
Patton Oswalt is one of the best stand up comedians around, I'm a big fan. Curious? Check out the live album Werewolves and Lollipops or browse m4m on Craigslist's 'Casual encounters' section. So, being that this dark comic has made me look like a walking asthma attack on several occasions, I was really looking forward to his big screen transition in Big Fan (2009). I watch... and I wait... and I'm totally confused.
It's certainly not a bad movie but one thing it isn't is a comedy. A little research shows it's from Robert D Siegel, writer of The Wrestler, a film which I loved but here he's gone for the quick one-two knockout and not quite landed. Big Fan is a story of faded dreams and missed opportunities much like The Wrestler but it's just somehow less interesting. The good news is Patton is really quite a decent actor and this film although not a triumph is enough of a square peg to be of interest to all but the most dedicated Bride Wars fan.