Ben is a whiny son of a bitch and I hated him almost on sight. But then he confesses he’s a movie reviewer who really likes the movie Mary and Max – watching him explain stop motion to blank-faced 20-somethings is an agony I related to all too well. And then that moment of synergy faded and I went back to hating the asshole. First impressions: there’s something to them.
In the wake of a bad breakup, Ben decides he just won’t leave his apartment anymore. His friends think he’s a dick but aren’t as concerned for his mental health as they perhaps should be. His world condenses down to shouting at 11 year olds over video game platforms, gaming internet dates with the same Richard Attenborough material, and chatting up whatever cute delivery persons cross his threshold.
Dan Abramovici as Ben (and the film’s co-writer, with director Mars Horodyski) is perfect for the role. I hate him as much as I hate the character. Ben is a loathsome guy who genuinely hurts his friends when he chooses his new “lifestyle” over celebrating their big milestones. And yet the film believes he is still worthy of love, still worthy of all the undercooked female characters they can throw at him. To say this movie fails the Bechdel test is misleading; you can’t administer a chemistry test to a remedial gym class and expect anyone to do well. And giving him a dog just made me feel sorry for the dog.
The one good thing I can say about this film is that it tops out at 70 minutes. Taking a page from Ben’s At Home, I’ll keep this review short too: nope.