Posted by: geonarcissa | March 11, 2010

Splinterheads: Film Review

I got a chance to see Splinterheads last night.

The film starts out feeling a bit like a 90’s Adam Sandler flick. The main character, Justin (played by Thomas Middleditch) even looks a bit like a young Sandler. Within minutes, that initial impression is solidified by the appearance of a pervy senior citizen, some gratuitous penis jokes, a generic blonde starlet, a Carl Weathers-ish token black character, and Shooter McGavin (er, Christopher McDonald). Unfortunately, Middleditch lacks Sandler’s charm and comedic timing, and Splinterheads quickly becomes a poor man’s Happy Gilmore without the funny.

For the most part, it continues along that path, leaning on the supposed hilarity of an old man and over-the-top carnival worker characters to draw laughs. Unfortunately, most of the joke attempts are just tasteless enough to offend, but not outrageous enough to be truly comedic.

The geocaching scenes with Middleditch and Rachael Taylor (playing con-artist carnival worker Galaxy) contrast sharply with the weak slapstick in the rest of the film. These scenes are reminiscent of other aimless-boy-meets-hot-girl films like Garden State and Elizabethtown, but the actors fail to convey any sense of real connection.

Now, about the geocaching. I had fears that this movie was going to make geocaching look lame and stupid. It doesn’t. *phew* However, it doesn’t really do it justice, either. Galaxy caches with a yellow eTrex, which apparently has about 300 foot accuracy in an open field on a sunny day. Taoiseach and I cringed at the playground cache, and wondered aloud how Galaxy managed to convince a local reviewer to publish a vacation cache. Perhaps a “spot the guidelines violations” drinking game is in order.

All in all, Splinterheads was a disappointment. I tend to enjoy quirky films, but Splinterheads lacks the originality required for true quirkiness. The two main characters aren’t developed enough to be endearing, and while there are some bright spots among the supporting cast, that’s not enough to lift the film above mediocre. The geocaching scenes don’t really fit in to the rest of the film, and most of the humour results in mild discomfort, rather than laughter.

I’ll take Happy Gilmore or Billy Madison over Splinterheads, any time.

Splinterheads poster

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Responses

  1. “spot the guidelines violations” drinking game. hahaha That’s the greatest.

    soo… I’m getting that it was almost like Napoleon Dynamite… in the fact that it just wasn’t funny at all?

    I still want to see it, but probably wont ever get around to it…. 😉

  2. It wasn’t *as bad* as Napoleon Dynamite. I watched 20 minutes of ND, thought “wtf” and shut it off.

  3. In that case I guess I need to watch it. I loved Napoleon Dynamite!


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