Over the years, I’ve written at length at how far too many indie comedies mistake quirk for character. Characters feel like people. They have emotions, goals, fears, etc. A character can have quirks, but they can’t be quirks. Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini‘s Imogene is yet another example of an indie comedy that derives its comedy not from clever jokes, thoughtful set-ups and payoffs, or believable characters. It attempts to get laughs from its miserable eponymous protagonist interacting with her goofy family of one-dimensional eccentrics. As much as Imogene strives to coast on the wackiness of the characters, the best jokes in this shapeless comedy come from the little off-handed moments that slip through the tortured, hollow idiosyncrasies.
Atlas Independent is new to the filmmaking game, but they’re off to a good start with the supporting cast for their first feature Revenge for Jolly!. Brian Petsos stars as the owner of a dog who died under suspicious circumstances. He and his cousin “follow a series of clues in an attempt to track down the dog’s murderer, leaving a path of destruction in their wake.” Oscar Isaac plays the cousin; Elijah Wood, Adam Brody, Ryan Phillippe, Kristen Wiig, David Rasche, Kevin Corrigan, Garret Dillahunt, Bobby Moynihan, and Gillian Jacobs also star. That’s a cast I trust with this absurdist premise.
Director Chadd Harbold wrapped the sub-$10 million production in August. For more info on Revenge for Jolly! and Atlas Independent’s mission statement, read the full press release after the jump.