The Extra Man (2010)
Written by Robert Pulcini, Jonathan Ames (book also), Shari Springer Berman
Directed by Shari Springer Berman, Robert Pulcini
Starring Paul Dano, Kevin Kline, Katie F. Holmes, John C. Reilly
Odd English professor gets kicked out of his teaching job in New Jersey and comes to Manhattan where he rents a room from an eccentric "Extra Man," or semi-gigolo.
i though this was totally fantastic. i love stories with bizarre, yet totally awesome characters. i have already recommended this so there is my opinion on it. i usually don't find independent movies entertaining because they are usually just cerebral. is that a huge generalization or what? i'm tempted to read the book, but i don't want to ruin the movie for myself. plus my book queue is three books deep right now, and that's enough books to keep me busy for a year....shut up. paul dano was perfectly cast and well played, despite moster's incredulity. i have known guys like this. i can name at least two off of the top of my head and having gone to art school i'm sure i can think of more if i sit down and focus on it. so shme, my poopies. even though this movie is marred by the presence of 1 josephine potter, her role is minor, and an unintelligent, annoying nitwit. sooo i guess once again good casting choice? plus john c. reilly cancels her out. good, good, good. i watched it twice.
I'm not as enamored of this movie as my woman is. While I might accept the existence of one of these three people in a single "filmic universe"--and it's even plausible to have Gershon and Henry living in the same building and being weird--I just don't buy the Dano character intersecting with this universe. I just don't buy his utter naivete. There are cell phones in this universe and it's supposed to be quaint that these people eschew the Interwebs and live in the 70s in their heads, but how did this dude get through high school and college without forming sufficient interpersonal skills? I just couldn't suspend that, and so it got on my nerves.
That said, I did chuckle more than once and I was interested (if not invested) in what happened to these people; and by and large the actual goings on of the film were conveyed well. This strange, grayish-brown New York was fully realized without feeling like any significant skill went into it. This was equal parts frustration and entertainment; and I don't know how strongly I recommend it.