Stocky Greg's passion is football, and he rounds up his family from their respective church meetings and rushes home just in time to make the kick-off of the Sunday afternoon Vikings game. ... See full summary »
Stocky Greg's passion is football, and he rounds up his family from their respective church meetings and rushes home just in time to make the kick-off of the Sunday afternoon Vikings game. He has just planted himself in front of his massive television screen scarfing down chicken when his new home teaching companion, Nelson, calls to inform him that he has set an appointment to visit the Mori family in 15 minutes. Mormon males serving as home teachers are admonished to visit with their assigned families once a month, bring them a spiritual message, and provide help as necessary. Nelson, a nerdy "letter of the law" kind of Mormon who will not even purchase gas on a Sunday, intends to visit 100 % of his assigned families every month, and as this is the last day of the month even the many madcap mishaps that start immediately will not deter him from completing his duty despite Greg's griping and attempts to get back to the games. Written by
There's usually a lot of work that goes into making a film: writing a good script, finding talented actors to play appealing characters (and yes, bad guys can be appealing too), setting up a believable and entertaining plot and interweaving some kind of theme. The Home Teachers failed miserably at all of the above.
After the relatively charming Singles Ward, the general public seemed a little disappointed with Halestorm's next endeavor, The R.M. The cultural fluff jokes were overused and made Mormons look like absolute idiots. So, having no expectations for The Home Teachers, I knew deep down it would turn out to be tripe in the extreme. At least in this I was NOT disappointed. It's one of the worst films of the year, maybe even of the decade.
First of all, the two main characters were dreadfully annoying. Neither of them had any real redeeming qualities, and I would hate to know either of them in person. While the actors playing them did well at being obnoxious, I guess, most of the blame in this lies in the hands of the screenwriters. The script was an absolute joke. I must admit the most eye-rolling part was when the life-changing, attitude-altering home teaching visit involved burying a dog (called a "yapper" by Michael Birkeland's character in true Chris Farley fashion). Laugh-out-loud yes, but ridiculous and contrived as well.
The whole experience seems like Tommy Boy for Mormons gone terribly, TERRIBLY wrong. The comparisons and similarities were blatant, undeniable and shameless. A road comedy, involving one fat, sloppy, lazy oaf who talks loud and stupid, and a thin, uptight, self-righteous goody-goody, and a road trip involving a car being totalled and a deer.
The soundtrack was repetitive (any of the cuts from the first two films would have worked as well), the cinematography was mediocre, the acting was like something you'd see in a Stake Roadshow. Yes, I'm LDS, but that doesn't mean I have to support something that highlights the ridiculous Culture side of the church and totally demoralizes the actual Gospel. Some will like it, but unfortunately that's because Mormons are easily picked on and don't realize how stupid it makes us look. *sigh* Hopefully, as I've heard it said, Richard Dutcher will be able to pull us out of this one.
For real LDS cinema (and just good films besides!), check out God's Army, or Dutcher's masterpiece Brigham City, or even the update of Pride & Prejudice. Skip the Home Teachers. It will make you want to slam the door on YOUR home teachers next time they come over, regardless of what message these guys TRIED to stick into the story at the end.
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