Our Idiot Brother

This Paul Rudd vehicle depicts Ned, a man that has a bit of a hippy lifestyle and a sweet heart trying to start over after getting out of jail from a pot charge. His three sisters all lead more traditional lives and each makes an ill-fated attempt at helping Ned get back on his feet. Along the way, everyone learns something about themselves and their lives and that maybe each of them needs to think about making some changes…

Rudd’s character exudes this naive innocence that adds an interesting layer to his character, he’s a little “too nice” at times which leads to a compelling conflict when things build to a head at one point in the film. It’s nice to see Paul Rudd in this role as he plays it well. His range is a bit wider than I think people give him credit for and his delivery is relaxed and natural too.

The writing in the film is well put together. None of the characters seem out of place nor are their actions or dialog. As far a label for the film, I would call it a family comedy. It’s got some peaks and valleys to it as well as some genuinely funny moments that make the film fun to watch.

There’s a great cast here with strong performances all around. Just given how everyone plays off each other on-screen, it seems like the cast had good chemistry and that they had an enjoyable set to work on. The lineup includes Elizabeth Banks, Adam Scott, Rashida Jones, Zooey Deschanel, Emily Mortimer and Steve Coogan. Keep an eye out for my friend Victoria Gates from our Cinema Alliance film Jane who makes an appearance as the blond ballerina Ned is trying to get to sign a release form early in the film.

If you’re looking for something light-hearted, funny with warm sentiments, take a look at Our Idiot Brother.

reviewed by Sean McKnight