Paul Rudd overstays his welcome in "Our Idiot Brother"
...would live in the movie theater but for the poor internet reception. He blogs daily at the Film Experience. Follow him on Twitter @nathanielr.
YOUR FEATURE PRESENTATION
If Willie Nelson had ever done a cover of "How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?" a simple name change to "Ned" would provide the perfect theme song for OUR IDIOT BROTHER. Like Maria, who just wasn't an asset to that abbey, sweet stoner Ned (Paul Rudd) has good intentions but is always in trouble; he's a headache, a flibbertijibbet, a clown. At the beginning of Our Idiot Brother we learn that Ned is both gentle enough and dumb enough to take pity on a sad uniformed cop and sell him some weed. See Ned go to prison.
Ned is lamb enough to not put up a fight when his lion-maned hippie girlfriend Janet (Kathryn Hahn) boots him off of their farm. His short prison stint was time enough for her to replace him with another manchild boyfriend (their similarity pays off in a fun sideways ways later on). Ned can deal with being homeless and jobless but is heartbroken about losing custody of his beloved dog "Willie Nelson". When he returns to his family in New York and begins couch-hopping, his only goal in life is to earn enough money to get Willie Nelson back.
Ned's sisters are played by the wonderful comic actresses Emily Mortimer, Elizabeth Banks and Zooey Deschanel but they're unfortunately allowed only a dimension or two to play: Mortimer is the harried control-freak housewife who turns a blind eye to her husband's (Steve Coogan) questionable behavior, Banks is a type A bitch and scruple free journalist who uses her next door neighbor (Adam Scott) carelessly, and Deschanel is a flighty comedienne who can't quite commit to her girlfriend (Rashida Jones) and takes up with an artist (Hugh Dancy) who paints nude models. Guess who needs the money?
A VISUAL ANSWER, AFTER THE JUMP...