Tuesday, September 27, 2016

[Review] My Blind Brother


Nick Kroll, Jenny Slate, and Adam Scott are the sticky love triangle in Sophie Goodhart's mildly funny comedy of sibling rivalry, My Blind Brother.

Bill (Kroll) is the self-described "lazy and resentful" brother, playing second string to the overachieving, beloved-by-parents, marathon-running champ Robbie (Scott), who happens to be blind. The competition between them ramps up even more when they both fall for a bubbly yet self-loathing woman named Rose (Jenny Slate), who's in the process of trying to sort out her life.

This is definitely a funny cast, which is why it's sort of disappointing that they don't really flaunt their comedic chops much here. Sure, there are a few good chuckle-worthy jokes along the way, as well as some dreadfully awkward moments, but nothing really hilarious. What the film does do well, though, is forming these characters, especially as jealousy games ensue, and keen observations on pre-judgment, guilt, selfishness, regrets, and intensely mixed feelings arise. The narrative essentially becomes a character-driven exploration of pity and superficiality. Zoe Kazan also contributes an amusing supporting performance as Rose's blunt roommate, and I would've liked to see more of her in this.

There's a third act twist that is both poignant and highly revelatory. It's a solid reveal that makes you re-think everything in the story up until this point, and it also breathes a new sense of dynamics between these two brothers. And no--the twist isn't that Robbie isn't truly blind or something. Come on, this isn't the Stevie Wonder story! Anyway, My Blind Brother is a film that grows on you and goes the distance during its heartfelt conclusion. But as far as recent brotherly dramedies go, it doesn't quite reach the hilarity and tenderness of the overlooked and underrated Mark and Jay Duplass film, The Do-Deca-Pentathlon (2012). However, I'd rank it alongside Jeff, Who Lives At Home (another Duplass bros film). So if you like the those films, you should check this one out.

( 7.5/10 )

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