Patton Oswalt, Kevin Corrigan, Gino Cafarelli, Marcia Jean Kurtz
Christine: Don’t you want something better?
Paul: Ya know, what if I offer you a job?? I mean, maybe I feel bad for you, stuck inside of a depressing dentist’s office!
Christine: …how is a dentist’s office depressing?
Paul (Oswalt) and his friend Sal (Corrigan) are obsessed with the New York Giants. After following their favorite player to a club one night, Paul is beaten brutally by the player, which leads to his suspension and Paul’s tough decision over whether or not to press charges against him.
It seems like there is a basis for an interesting movie here. Seeing these guys watch the Giants games on TV in the stadium parking lot (because they can’t afford tickets) is kinda sad, but still interesting. Unfortunately, outside of a few scenes here and there, this movie is just a dull, unfunny waste of a good idea.
Patton Oswalt has just the right look for this role, but I don’t think he really pulled it off very well, as far as the character goes. Or maybe the script is to blame, as we never really sympathize with Paul. I think we’re supposed to like him because the rest of his family is so much more unlikable in comparison, but that doesn’t really work in a movie. Paul needs to display at least some amount of charm, but he just seems to alternate between angry, obsessed, and depressed throughout the movie. When there’s no character on screen to sympathize with, I usually just start feeling sorry for myself instead.
The story just sort of creeps along with little energy and a lot of repetition. There’s also one plot issue I had a problem with, and that is the fact that after Paul is beaten up by the athlete, a detective is relying on Paul’s testimony to build a case against the player. The thing is, Paul’s friend Sal was there too. Right there when it all happened, but the idea of him being a witness is never even mentioned. It’s all on Paul. Where’s your best friend when you need him?
Anyway, this film certainly doesn’t seem to feature a loving portrayal of overzealous sports fans (or maybe even humans in general, really), as they are viewed almost entirely as losers with no lives, living vicariously through the athletes they worship. I like the idea of having that hero worship literally being beaten out of Paul, but it’s pretty clear by the end of the movie that his character hasn’t changed a bit.
Do not reveal to large football players that you followed them to a sketchy neighborhood where you saw them pick something up from somebody.
10 – 3.5 for being generally boring and unfunny – 1.5 for annoying characters = 5.0