Passenger Side

April 11, 2010 at 10:06 pm (Uncategorized)

It’s been a long time since I’ve been to a movie premiere, but last week I went to see Passenger Side the new film from Matthew Bissonnette.

It’s the story of two brothers on a road trip within the Los Angeles area. It’s Michael’s birthday and his younger brother Toby calls him and asks Michael to drive him around because his own car is in the shop. Michael reluctantly agrees to drive his bother around on his errands.

However, the nature of the errands become stranger and stranger, and Toby finally confesses that he is looking for his ex-girlfriend with whom he   trying to reconnect. Throw in a few plot twists, some general weirdness and a great soundtrack, and you have the recipe for a great movie.

Or not…

The film isn’t terrible or anything, but it had a certain forced quality about it that made it difficult to enjoy.  Much of the dialogue has a sit-comish quality about it that goes beyond witty banter: everyone has clever one liners and comebacks.

In addition, many of the characters they meet on their trip seem merely thrown in with little reason to be there. Early in the movie while Michael is waiting, a woman gets into his car and begins jerking off. Later on, they drop by a house where a porn film is being shot. the two women in the scene sit and talk about a dream one of them had. So, why is this important in the narrative?

I admit though, the movie is partially redeemed by the clever ending, which I won’t reveal.

At the premier, the director and Mac from Superchunk were on hand to answer questions, and after Mac and Jim did an acoustic set of Superchunk and Portastatic songs. Amazing, especially since the second song was Cool, my all-time favourite Superchunk song.

I hope it’s not uncharitable to speak ill of a film I didn’t pay to see, but there you go.



  1. Paul Faulkner said,

    I always think of candy bars, not bands, when I hear the name Superchunk! I must be hungry.

    Anyway, sounds like the acoustic set, rather than the movie, was the highlight of the evening, which proves my long-held belief that “Live Music Is Better” bumper stickers should be issued to the masses!


    • fischerzed said,

      There’s just somthing about the live experience, isn’t there? The first band I saw live was the Stranglers on The Raven tour in 1979. Never seen anything like it. i can still remember the excitement.

      For the last few years, my live music habits have declined. But since last year, I have happily reversed the trend. In May, I’ve got three shows lined up. Next Friday – Heavy Trash with CatL at the Horseshe!

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