If you are looking for a comedy that has a lot of laughs and surprising situations, Our Idiot Brother fails to deliver. Opening late in the summer wasn't a good idea since the film comes on the heels of a fairly good year for human humor. A lot of ‘seen that' and ‘not too original' puts this film on a fast track to a low box office. If you haven't seen a comedy this year, then maybe it's worth a watch.
We enter the life of Ned (Paul Rudd) a 30 something loser that sells homegrown vegetables at an open market with his hippie girl friend Janet (Kathryn Hahn). Being the idiot he is, Ned sells some pot to a uniformed cop in a sting operation. Serving a short time due to good behavior, Ned gets out of jail only to find out Janet has taken over the business is shacking up with a friend and has no need for him. Ned decides that his only salvation is to take his problem to his mom and three sisters. When the family starts taking him in one sibling at a time, their lives start turning upside down.
Rudd plays his usual lifeless self with deadpan comedy that has become the industry standard for the loner guy. You've probably seen this character before, especially if you follow film stars like Steve Carell (Crazy, Stupid, Love), Jason Bateman (Horrible Bosses), Adam Sandler (Just Go With It), Kevin James (Zookeeper), well you get the idea. Here however, it's the script that causes Rudd to crash and burn. His character is so insipid that you cannot feel sorry for the dumb looser. And the messes he makes are way too avoidable to be realistic.
In addition to the uncreative writing, part of the blame must go to director Jesse Peretz who didn't recognize that his story was hackneyed and needed a good script doctor to ramp it up for better entertainment value. It wasn't that he didn't have a great cast including Elizabeth Banks, Zooey Deschanel and Emily Mortimer with which to work. The three likable ladies were dumbed down so much however; it made Rudd's character look brilliant. As for predictability, well lets not go there…enough said.
Our Idiot Brother is rated R for sexual content including nudity, and for language throughout. The nudity is mostly gratuitous and not involving the main female cast, the profanity gets very loose and sometimes embarrassing.