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‘Wanderlust’ is a bust

 

 
Overview
 

Genre:
 
Starring: , ,
 
Directed By:
 
Studio:
 
MPAA Rating:
 
Release Date: February 24, 2012
 
Length: 98 minutes
 
Directing
5.0


 
Plot
5.0


 
Acting
7.0


 
Cinematography
7.0


 
Total Score
6.0
6/ 10


 

Whoa


Wanderlust features a terrific cast.

No


The film just isn’t that funny and it comes off as exaggerated characters in a series of half-written skits that never coalesce.


Bottom Line

We spent most of Wanderlust wishing the long, strange trip would come to a quick conclusion.

0
Posted February 27, 2012 by

 
Full Review
 
 

As much as we liked writer-director David Wain’s 2008 comedy, Role Models, we just couldn’t get behind his latest venture, Wanderlust. Paul Rudd, who was so terrific in Role Models as an energy drink salesman forced to do community service, here plays George, a New York businessman who loses his job after an FBI company raid.

George and his wife, Linda (Jennifer Aniston), must ditch their pricey West Village micro-loft (their realtor’s upscale term for an efficiency apartment) to live with George’s annoying brother Rick (Ken Marino), who runs a portable toilet rental business in Atlanta. On the drive from New York to Atlanta (which, incidentally features a funny montage in which George and Linda alternately blame each other for going broke in NYC), they spend the night at a commune of sorts run by an old bohemian (Alan Alda) and a cast of characters including a stuck-in-the-‘80s neo-hippie (Justin Theroux).

Despite the wacky New Age rituals of truth circles and free love, Linda and George experience an awakening of sorts and decide to try communal living for a couple of weeks to see if they can fit in and find themselves. Linda has more luck than George, who longs to return to a desk job, a bathroom with doors, and their old life together. But, when his good will runs dry, George finds it’s not so easy to lure his wife away from a gypsy existence.

Wain has assembled a terrific cast for Wanderlust: Rudd and Aniston play well off each other; Joe Lo Truglio hams it up as a wine-making nudist who’s trying to write the great American novel; Alda doesn’t miss a beat as the community’s acid casualty founder; and Kathryn Hahn lets loose as a hippie with anger management issues. Unfortunately, cameos by the likes of Michael Ian Black, Michael Showalter and Wain himself are wasted.

In the end, the film just isn’t that funny. It comes off as exaggerated characters in a series of half-written skits that never coalesce. Underneath all the attempted hippie and suburban humor, this is a traditional film about a couple in trouble and Wain doesn’t put enough of a twist on that central storyline to make it compelling. We spent most of the movie wishing the long, strange trip would come to a quick conclusion.


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