Nude Memphis Movie Review: Our Idiot Brother

Our Idiot Brother

I went to see this movie on a whim. I thought that the story sounded pretty "iffy" at best, but the actors and actresses in it were all people I liked. So I gave it a shot.

Paul Rudd plays Ned, a happy-go-lucky pot smoking hippie who believes that if you give everyone the benefit of the doubt and trust them, then they will want to live up to your expectations and not disappoint you. While this works well enough most of the time, when it backfires it backfires badly.

Ned is selling organic produce when a uniformed cop comes along and tells Ned how stressed out he is. Then he asks if Ned can tell him where he could buy some pot. At first Ned thinks he's joking, but the cop insists and then acts all hurt that Ned doesn't think that even cops need to unwind and smoke a Jay every now and then. So Ned feels bad for the cop and sells him some vegetables, along with a free bag of pot. And of course, the cop arrests him for the pot.

When Ned gets out of jail, he finds that his girlfriend has shacked up with another hippie guy, won't let him come home to live, and won't even give him back his dog. She immediately shows herself to be a controlling, manipulative bitch. But Ned is a nice guy and she walks all over him.

Now Ned needs a place to live, so he has to go home to his family. His mother takes him in, but he's not comfortable with that, so he tries living with one of his three sisters.

Liz, played by Emily Mortimer, takes him in first. Liz is married to an English documentary film maker who doesn't like Ned and fights her tooth and nail not to let Ned come live with them. Once Ned moves in, he begins working with Dylan to help with his documentary film making. Basically he does all the driving and carries Dylan's junk. Along the way, Ned stumbles in on Dylan alone with the ballerina who is the main focus of his current film, and both of them are completely naked. Dylan explains that it is essential for his film that she be naked, and that he must also be naked in order to put her at ease. Immediately after this odd discovery, Dylan insists to Liz that Ned move out right away. So Ned is forced to find another sister to live with.

He moves in with Miranda, a reporter with a sort of on-again, off-again relationship with her neighbor. Basically, she only has a relationship with him when it is convenient for her, but because he likes her so much he drops everything and comes running whenever she wants. She controls him and everyone else around her and that's they way she likes it. She absolutely doesn't want Ned living with her, but she is more or less roped into it. So Ned sleeps on her couch and drives her to interviews when her normal driver fails to show up. In a very important interview with a very wealthy woman, Lady Arabella, played by Janet Montgomery, Miranda is annoyed when Lady Arabella seems to prefer talking with Ned over talking with her, and the interview is almost impossible to get because of this. Basically, Lady Arabella has some scandal in her life that every reporter wants to get the scoop on, but Lady Arabella won't talk about it. But when she becomes friendly with Ned, she tells him all about it, trusting that he won't betray her confidence because he is just such a nice guy.

Ned and Lady Arabella

Ned, while staying with Miranda, spends a significant amount of time with her boyfriend/neighbor Jeremy, played by Adam Scott. Jeremy confides in Ned how he feels about Miranda, both good and bad. And Miranda from time to time confides in Ned how she feels about Jeremy. At one point, Ned accidentally lets slip how much Jeremy dislikes how controlling Miranda is. Miranda immediately pounces on Ned and begins ripping into him. But then Ned tries to fix the problem he's apparently caused by pointing out something Miranda said about Jeremy. This causes Jeremy to rip into Miranda. The more Ned talks, trying to fix this fight he seems to have caused, the more he reveals what they've been saying about each other behind their backs, which makes everything worse. Meanwhile, Miranda really needs to know what Lady Arabella told Ned. Her job is on the line over it. But Ned won't let her publish it and embarrasses her in front of her boss when he won't betray Lady Arabella to his sister.

Ned making things worse between Miranda and Jeremy

So Ned has to find another place to live. He ends up with his third sister, Natalie, played by Zoey Deschanel. Natalie is somewhat lost in the world, living with her lesbian girlfriend Cindy, played by Rashida Jones, but at the same time not really sure that she actually is a lesbian. She just hooks up with anyone who will show her something resembling love. Unfortunately, this leads to complications between her and Cindy, which Ned accidentally gets himself into the middle of, and he winds up back at home with his mother.

Now Ned has broken up the relationships of 2 of his 3 sisters, and before he moves back home to live with his mother, he mentions to Miranda and Natalie how odd he thinks it is that Dylan films his ballerina while both of them are nude. He assumes there is nothing to it and thus there is no harm in telling them about it. Naturally his two sisters immediately realize that Dylan is having an affair. And while the whole family is at their mother's house, they get Liz alone and try to tell her what they've discovered. A big fight results and all three sisters tear into each other, and all are aware that Ned is at the center of all of their break-ups.

Ned says your husband is having an affair ...

I'm not going to reveal how the movie ends. I think you should go see it, and do it quick because it's been out for awhile and is going to be out of the theaters soon.

I liked this movie more than I expected to. First, the story wasn't so bad. Second, no one got hit in the balls. Third, anything with Elizabeth Banks in it is a winner for me. Fourth, I love Zooey Deschanel. She's awesome. In fact, I like her so much that she's in my blogroll over there to the left of this post. Check her out.

So, one star for no one getting hurt in their genitals. One star because Elizabeth Banks is fucking awesome. One star because Zooey Deschanel is, too. There's three stars just for those things alone. And one more star because the movie was funny enough to be worth watching. It was even funny enough to be worth paying the small fortune that it costs to go to the movies these days. I liked it.

So I give Our Idiot Brother four stars out of five. Go see it.

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