Review by Tom Swift
An amiable romantic comedy, Glitch needs a shot of hot sauce to make your tongue burn and your heart race.
It’s as if the filmmakers prepared an elaborate Mexican meal and forgot the red chili pepper. The elements of a barn burning romantic comedy are here: meet cute; love triangle; good friend’s girlfriend; bromance interruptus; chic urban atmosphere, etc. etc. etc. But just where is the heat?
In this film, two game developers with an expensive loft and no non-work lives get ripped off by a major game corporation — while the cute, lovable developer falls in love with his lawyer’s cute, lovable girlfriend. Lucas Neff does a decent job playing this nerd, but he never really gets inside the character.
If the filmmakers had bothered to give us a little more evil in Lucas or the corporate villains, the plot might have begun to simmer earlier. HBO’s Silicon Valley—which is very similar to this – knows how to have the fun with corporate and personal evil, lending spice to the story of the nerdish developers. Silicon Valley also gives all its characters a slightly off-center take. Here, it’s like we’re trapped in inside an unsweetened flan, and our two developer heroes might as well be bank tellers.
And if Glitch had put some passion into the movie’s love story between the good guy developer and the good girl coffee shop barista, things might have approached a boil. Lust makes the world go round in movies (we love naughty fantasies in the darkness of the theater), and here love seems to be more of an inconvenience to be overcome. Our hero and heroine don’t even really kiss until the last scene of the film. Apparently, the filmmakers don’t realize that we’re not in Kansas anymore.
As Glitch evolves with just enough complications to keep things almost rolling along until the midpoint, the actors finally get into the groove and start to show some quirky passion and some real, slightly askew personalities. It’s almost too late. Everything has a low budget, one take feel to it here. And that isn’t enough to really keep us entertained.
Nancy Meyers, Hollywood’s master of romantic comedy, is famous for innumerable retakes, shooting again and again until the actors get just the right pitch of the real and surreal i.e. the laughable. Here we mostly just get “real” –which is nice but never laugh out loud funny.
It’s hard to dump on such a gentle movie. There should be more people like these guys in our own real world. But as any good Mexican restaurant knows, it’s not our job to bring the hot sauce.
On Digital HD and On Demand July 7th.
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