It’s been a decade since Ben and Andrew were the bad boys of their college campus. Ben has settled, Andrew hasn’t. After a night of drinking, the two find themselves locked in a mutual dare: to enter an amateur porn contest by having sex with each other.
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More than anything, I think Humpday is a truly contemporary coming-of-age film. One friend contemplates the shallowness of his artist-traveler-sexual adventurer-existence; the other wants to experience something outside of his 'normal' adult life. The voyeuristic, sexual foil to these contemplations of self is an amateur porn/art--conflagrating self, sex, art, and the masses.
Mumblecore gets a bad rap, but I could watch these characters bounce off one another for hours. I remember what a tonic this was in 2009, coming in the middle of the post-Apatow bromance boom, twisting the cliches with a woman's touch. (The wife is as developed as the boys). A witty pleasure that somehow makes the most ridiculous comic premise seem believable—and heartfelt, too.
**1/2. Why not. An interesting idea, a shaking camera, fve or six long dialogue scenes and an action sequence (the basketball one). As this latter scene is, according to me, the best moment of Humpday, I'm prone to believe that Mark Duplass is better at filming unsaid emotions or thoughts than at making you bear unending psychological mumbo jambo. A director to keep an eye on even if Humpday is already forgotten.
I saw this at Sundance with a first audience. The straight men were squirming. The gays were thinking "what's the problem exactly?" The women were saying, "you guys are so f**ked up." As a satire of middle class men, marriage, liberal ideals, and even artistic pretense, it is perversely inspired but sweet. Duplass and Leonard are great for this improv acting style.
(Shelton's Your Sister's Sister is also very good)