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Dark Horse (2011)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Drama | 29 June 2012 (UK)
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Romance blooms between two thirty-somethings in arrested development: an avid toy collector who is the dark horse of his family and a depressed woman on the rebound.

Director:

Todd Solondz

Writers:

Todd Solondz, Harold Manning (french adaptation)
3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Melisa Young Melisa Young ... Wedding Singer
Jordan Gelber ... Abe
Selma Blair ... Miranda (formerly 'Vi')
Mia Farrow ... Phyllis
Christopher Walken ... Jackie
Zachary Booth ... Justin
Donna Murphy ... Marie
Tyler Maynard ... Jiminy
Mary Joy ... Lori
Peter McRobbie ... Arnie
Justin Bartha ... Richard
Aasif Mandvi ... Mahmoud
Di Quon ... Waitress
Lee Wilkof ... Phil
Tara-Lee Pollin Tara-Lee Pollin ... Dancing Bride
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Storyline

Abe Wertheimer - an odious, purposeless, self-centered 35-year-old living parasitically with his parents (by choice) and working in his dismayed father's business office (avoiding work while scoping eBay for collectible toys) - meets Miranda, an equally pathetic but self-loathing social dropout who, having given up on life, masochistically accepts Abe's sudden proposal of marriage for a knowingly grim future she won't fight against. Along with projecting his own faults onto his father, his own jealousy for lack of success and accomplishment onto his younger brother, and wallowing in the blind support of his mother, it's just another aspect of Abe's unsatisfying life that he just can't see to improve. A long-overdue decision finally spins his insignificant life out of control. Written by statmanjeff

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 June 2012 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Mi novia ideal See more »

Filming Locations:

Edgewater, New Jersey, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$13,551, 10 June 2012, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$940,430, 25 November 2016
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Double Hope Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The toy store Abe tries to return a defective toy to is clearly a Toys "R" Us, despite the logo being digitally blurred. See more »

Goofs

On the sofa, Marie drinks form her left hand, but when she gets up, her drink is in her right hand, but then it's back in her left hand when she gets to the bar. See more »

Quotes

Miranda: I want to want you.
Abe: That's enough for me.
See more »


Soundtracks

Flute Concerto in G Major, K. 313: I. Allegro Maestoso
Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performed by Martin Pearlman & Boston Baroque
Soloist: Jacques Zoon
Courtesy of Telare International
Used by permission of Concord Music Group, Inc.
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User Reviews

 
And Down the Stretch He Goes...
18 July 2012 | by soncomanSee all my reviews

Director Todd Solondz returns to the land of melancholy with "Dark Horse," his latest serio-comic look at some of life's semi-lovable losers. I say "semi-lovable" because Solondz's characters often contain a dark streak of 'nasty' inside them, and this nastiness often manifests itself in disturbing ways.

Such is the case with Abe (Jordan Gelber,) a thirty-something man-child still living in the action-figure-adorned bedroom of his parents' home. Abe, who passes most days at his father's office avoiding work while trolling eBay for collectibles, finds himself at a wedding seated next to Miranda, an equally socially-awkward and very possibly damaged woman (Selma Blair.) After one date, Abe proposes to Miranda. Her rationale for accepting his proposal is the funniest and most depressing scene in the film. You find yourself laughing, and then quickly wondering how many people end up getting married for EXACTLY the same reasons as Miranda, without readily admitting it.

Abe's troubles mount as he finds himself having to deal with the ramifications of his rash decision. His parents (the marvelously restrained Christopher Walken and the equally marvelously restrained Mia Farrow) may be the original source of his troubles. His father constantly compares him to his more successful brother. His mother just wants him to accept his perennial-loser status, but she does it in the most kind and loving way.

None of this excuses Abe's selfishness and irrational sense of entitlement. Abe's doubts about his actions take the form of imaginary meetings and conversations with the people frustrating him in his life. (The narrative does get a bit muddled here.) His self-centeredness has devastating consequences, for others, but ultimately for himself. This 'dark horse' is not going to surprise us with a win.

Solondz leads this "Horse" well, but he can't make it drink. He doesn't disappoint, but he doesn't really surprise us either. The performances are uniformly fine. Gelber in particular does a good job of walking the tightrope of character between genuinely unpleasant and sadly unaware. Blair gets credit for playing Miranda as something other than a carbon copy or even a reverse negative image of Abe. Miranda is sadly aware of the pathetic nature of her life, and her bluntness in dealing with it is refreshing.

"Dark Horse" won't have you rolling in the aisles. You'll smile some, chuckle once or twice, and wince a lot. Standard Solondz, but that's better than most.

www.worstshowontheweb.com


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