Aneesh Chaganty

Movie #95 Cyrus

In Uncategorized on December 22, 2010 at 8:00 AM

Movie #95 Cyrus

(2010, US, d. Jay Duplass, Mark Duplass)

What saddens me most about this film is that it went completely under the radar. The Golden Globes, which this year may I add have destroyed their reputation beyond any hope with their measly and pathetic nominations for Best Comedy/Musical, failed to acknowledge this film – which in my opinion is the best comedy of the year. Though it features the likes of Jonah Hill and John C. Reilly, Cyrus isn’t a raunchy or loud comedy in the vein of an Apatow flick. Rather it is a quiet and hilarious film with that “indie” feel. The smartest thing about this film, though, is that it takes the psychological thriller genre and turns it on its head. The plot of this film has been recycled a dozen times, most recently in 2009’s Beyonce vehicle Obsessed but with roots that stretch back to Polanski’s time in the US. It’s about a son (Jonah Hill) who tries to break up his mother’s relationship by subtly playing tricks on the pair of them (Marisa Tomei & John C. Reilly), manipulating sympathies, and causing the two to go against each other. He pops in in the middle of the night holding a knife, appears in the house when the two are about to make love, and sends Reilly quiet signals whenever his mother isn’t looking. This film (granted with a slightly different cast) could have been a dark thriller, but is turned into a dramedy in the Duplass’ hands. It’s funny and touching and all of the leads deliver performances I haven’t seen from them before. Apart from Get Him to the Greek (which I have not seen) and The Kids Are All Right (same), 2010 hasn’t been a good year for the comedy. So I think I can safely say this was the funniest movie I’ve seen all year.


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