DVD: Cyrus (15)
Friday 18 February 2011
"I'm in tailspin, I'm lonely, I'm depressed... I've got so much to give," blurts out a sozzled John, John C Reilly's middle-aged lunk, to a stranger at a party he's invited to by his very tolerant ex-wife (Catherine Keener).
The stranger skedaddles, but Marisa Tomei's lovely Molly falls for this maudlin patter, following John out to the garden to watch him pee. They flirt, they sleep together, but can "true love" run smooth in the Duplass brothers' romantic comedy? Certainly not, as John is about to meet Cyrus (Jonah Hill), Molly's podgy, bone idle, very manipulative 21-year-old son, who's living at home and isn't terribly keen on sharing his mom with another man. "I think you might be coming on a tad too strongly," he suggests calmly. But this isn't a Farrelly Brothers or indeed Step Brothers-type gross-out comedy, as the Duplass brothers, kings of mumblecore flicks such as The Puffy Chair and Baghead, are much keener on the hushed, creepier aspects of human behaviour. John and Cyrus are both needy, deeply dysfunctional men. John clings to his ex-wife, constantly asking her for advice – even when she's picking out flowers for her wedding – and Cyrus fakes panic attacks so that Molly can hug him all through the night. Neither of them deserve Molly's time, quite frankly. Like many recent comedies, Cyrus has very few actual jokes, but the acting is first-rate (particularly Tomei) and the end is peculiarly moving.
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