Writer-director Jordan Roberts’ Frankie Go Boom is one of those films that seemed destined for cult comedy status. The premise is simple enough: a young man, tormented all his life by his older brother’s pranks, must track down an unauthorized and rather embarrassing sex tape before it gets out to the general public. Then you look at the impressive cast – Charlie Hunnam, Chris O’Dowd, Lizzy Caplan, Chris Noth and Ron Perlman – and you wonder, how can this one possibly miss? I decided to check out the newly-released Blu-ray to find out. Hit the jump to check out my review.
Since we haven’t reviewed the feature film here before, I’ll do a brief rundown and share my thoughts. I was initially interested in Frankie Go Boom for two reasons: the cast and the possibility of this becoming a cult comedy. I’m a fan of Hunnam from his Sons of Anarchy series and was interested in seeing him try comedy on for size; I was equally curious to see him opposite his SoA co-star Perlman, who would be dressed in drag as a post-operative transsexual in the film. Hunnam plays a pretty good straight man surrounded by a cast of wacky and unapologetic characters. Having seen him and Perlman share a strange couple of scenes in the film, I’ll never look at SoA again. The rest of the cast – the up-and-coming O’Dowd, the always reliable and attractive Caplan and the capable Noth – give it their all and manage to turn in acceptable performances.
The problem with Frankie Go Boom lies with the script. It’s simply not that funny. It’s crude without going to Judd Apatow levels, it’s wacky without going as far as Dude, Where’s My Car? or Road Trip, two cult comedies this film seems to borrow some elements from. Sure there’s a fun gross-out scene with a pig, a supporting cast of goofy characters with one-liners and a faux sex-tape setup worthy of an Orgazmo production, but it just never seems to come together. The jokes, the stakes and the characters all could have done with another few rounds of punch-ups, but what you see is what you get. If you missed it in theaters, which is likely since it was in limited release for a short time, it might be worth a rent if you’re a fan of this cast and want to see them doing something different. The single-disc Blu-ray is just fine on the audio/visual front with limited features, but a nice extra that shows the cast and crew talking about their reasons for getting involved with the picture.
Behind the Scenes (~10 minutes)
- Roberts, Hunnam, O’Dowd, Caplan, Perlman, Noth, Nora Dunn, Sam Anderson and Whitney Cummings all talk about getting involved with the project, reading the script and wanting to work on the film in order to do something different from their previous work.
Deleted / Alternate Scenes (7 scenes)
- Extended takes or alternate scenes to those seen in the final cut, including an alternate ending.
Pig in the Pool (~3 minutes)
- A behind-the-scenes look at the pig-launching scene from the movie. Unfortunately, it’s merely a collection of behind-the-scenes footage with no real narration or structure.