21 May 2009

DVD: "Grandma's Boy" - Unrated

Grandma's Boy
Directed by Nicholaus Goossen
Written by Barry Wernick and Allen Covert & Nick Swardson
Starring: Linda Cardellini, Allen Covert, Peter Dante, Shirley Jones, Shirley Knight, Joel David Moore, Kevin Nealon, Doris Roberts, Nick Swardson
DVD Release Date: 27 June 2006
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
List Price: Currently Out-of-Print

The Film
Alex (Covert) is a 35 year-old video game tester forced to move in with his grandmother (Roberts) and her two roommates (Jones and Knight).  So as not to lose the admiration of his younger co-workers, Alex spins the story to suggest that he has taken up with three sex-starved nymphos.  In truth, though, he has set his attention on new supervisor Sam (Cardellini).

You get the original R-rated theatrical cut as well as the unrated version, and if two cuts of the movie aren't enough, you also get two commentary tracks.  The first is by firsttime director Goossen; the second is by the trio of Covert, Dante and Swardson.  The former is more engaging than one might expect from a director on his first outing, and the latter benefits from the behind-the-scenes roles of the three actors (all three have producer credits, and Covert and Swardson co-wrote the screenplay).  There are a handful of deleted scenes, presented individually and as part of a montage with some outtakes; each commentary references additional cutting room floor fodder not presented on this release.  The actual behind-the-scenes material is scant; a look at the filming of a scene in which Covert is caught masturbating and another discussing the chimpanzee.  The meatiest material is a simple segment of FOX Movie Channel Presents: Casting Session.

The Recommendation
There have been countless stoner movies over the years, but there a few things that make Grandma's Boy a (somewhat guilty) pleasure.  First, I don't know of any other amalgamation of stoner flick and The Golden Girls.  Second, the running theme of video game culture is sincere, yet frequently hilarious--including an especially memorable Dance Dance Revolution showdown.  Finally, the party scene.  Somehow, this party scene--which occupies a full ten of the ninety-four minute run time--rises above being an obligatory inclusion.  In fact, it's so fun that it is actually a party I would love to have attended.  And if wanting to be there isn't the sign of an engaging movie, then I don't know what is.

Despite being out of print currently, I found a copy a week ago in a $5.00 dump bin at K-mart.

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