I saw The Comedy at a packed theater at the Vancouver International Film Festival (2012). The film follows a rich spoiled Brooklyn hipster type played by Tim Heidecker. He and his friends wallow in an excess of alcohol, boredom, and childish antics as they careen from one disruption to another. The character of Swanson pushes every boundary of good taste and civil behavior and will definitely get a reaction out of the audience.
As you watch The Comedy, you will laugh. There are definitely scenes of laugh out loud silliness and gross out humor. But this is not a comedy! The jokes all have a point and it's a point that is most definitely not funny.
Rick Alverson was in attendance and did a Q&A after the show. He said he deliberately wanted to make a film that provoked noting how tired he was of seeing people leave mainstream films like violent action films completely unphased. He only wrote a 20 page script and let the actors improvise extensively. He also simply emailed the actors, including Tim Heidecker, to see if they were interested and they jumped at the opportunity. Alverson thought the discomfort inherent in the comedy of Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim would translate well into this dramatic picture and with that he succeeded. You will squirm, guaranteed! Whether or not you will pick up on the deeper commentary, or if there even is a deeper point, depends really on the person.
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