The Comedy Opens in Austin Theaters with Cast and Director in Attendance Today

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By Liz Lopez

Rating C-

Tim Heidecker, one half of Adult Swim’s Tim and Eric Awesome Show Great Job!, stars in The Comedy, a feature narrative that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival this year and also screened as a Festival Favorite during the 2012 SXSW Film Festival. Viewers beware; this is not a comedy that is open for viewing to all ages. There is nudity, drugs, alcohol and tobacco consumed for starters. Although I did not view it during SXSW last March, I would have likely wanted to walk out of the festival screening. I say this now after recently viewing it for the theatrical release in town and judging the opening scenes and listening to the Swanson character spew such ugly, inappropriate comments to other people. I value my time at this festival and this would have not been worthy of the 94 minutes, when there are so many others with content that appeals to me. The screenwriters, Robert Donne and Colm O’Leary, do a fine job of creating a wealthy 30 something man-child character I disliked completely. Unfortunately, I do believe there is someone here in town that has some of the similar characteristics and this is scary.

Swanson also has friends in Brooklyn who are like minded, so to have them sit in a public place, including churches, doing absolutely ridiculous, senseless things with their time is enraging and sickening, to say the least. The friends (“Tim & Eric” co-star Eric Wareheim, LCD Soundsystem frontman James Murphy and comedian Gregg Turkington a.k.a.“Neil Hamburger”) create games of comic irreverence and mock sincerity.

Director Rick Alverson’s character study is a dark humor that not everyone will connect with, but for those viewers who stay through the whole film will think about the story and this character for a while. It is not easy to dismiss some of the scenes and although we are not part of their world, they do exist in our society and with their money make some choices that do impact our world, if we allow them. Unfortunately, with all of their addictions, someone is still going to have to look after the adults that do not grow up responsibly.

Kate Lyn Sheil and Alexia Rasmussen also form part of the cast. Heidecker and director Alverson are scheduled to be in attendance for an evening Q&A on Friday, November 30 at the Alamo Drafthouse S. Lamar.

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