March 23, 2011

Extra Man - 2010

Directors: Shari Springer Bergman & Robert Pulcini
Writers: Shari Springer Bergman, Robert Pulcini, & Jonathan Ames
Starring: Paul Dano, Kevin Kline, John C. Reilly

"So, there we are...where are we?" After moving to Manhattan to find himself, Louis (Dano) moves in with the older, eccentric Henry Harrison (Kline) and struggles with his urges to be feminine while Harrison teaches him the subtle art of being an "extra man," that is, an unpaid-by-money-or-sex escort for older women.

This film was tonally similar to The Living Wake, albeit a lot more grounded in reality. Dano seems to be an actor that people either love or hate (based so far mostly on Little Miss Sunshine and There Will Be Blood), and I'm in the former camp. It was a little hard for me to accept that he's old enough to be a convincing teacher, but he really comes through with the challenging bits of the film. As for Kline, he's an old pro at the acting game, and never fails to please (even in his less-than-stellar films from years past). For reason's I won't go into here, Reilly is the most obtuse character, and I'd have enjoying a bit more background on his character, but he's ultimately entertaining, despite not really entering the film until halfway through. A quirky little film perfect for a slow day. B+

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