Film Review: ‘Wrong’

Caption: Jack Plotnick plays a harried everyman in "Wrong." Credit: Drafthouse Films
Caption: Jack Plotnick plays a harried everyman in “Wrong.” Credit: Drafthouse Films

‘Wrong’
Director: Quentin Dupieux
Stars: Jack Plotnick, William Fichtner
Rating: 2 (out of 5) Globes

For a movie about a killer tire on the prowl, Quentin Dupieux’s “Rubber” was surprisingly, almost unnecessarily, focused. An inexplicable premise became a wry, loopy commentary on inexplicable premises and the people that give them an audience. “Wrong,” the French DJ-turned-auteur’s follow-up, is classic sophomore slump: an unfocused mishmash, evidently the result of him emptying out notebooks filled with odd ideas that simply needed a home. Some are amusing, some are not amusing, and once one adjusts expectations to low can its sporadic charms be properly enjoyed.

Jack Plotnick plays Dolph, an everyman who awakens one day to a missing dog. Suddenly, apparently, life goes awry in random, absurdist ways. His clock, rather than read, e.g., “7:00” reads “6:60.” The fire sprinklers are constantly going off at his office, from which he was fired but to which he returns everyday anyway. His neighbor abruptly abandons his house to wander the earth. His gardener is mistaken for him by a hot young thing, who becomes pregnant and soon thereafter delivers a baby who is suddenly a grown boy.

Dupieux has already made a not-sequel entitled “Wrong Cops,” with more and bigger names (including Eric Wareheim and Marilyn Manson). But “Wrong” barely has enough gags on its own, and is forced to repeatedly repeat ones that weren’t so hot the first time. It’s telling that a few of these are derivative: the vision of hellish office life is vaguely reminiscent of the one in “Joe Vs. the Volcano,” while the joke about a rapidly growing boy was already present in another, far funnier comedy, “Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part One.”


Dolph’s pursuit of his errant mutt serves as the closest thing to a structure. He soon runs afoul of the enigmatic Master Chang (William Fichtner), an apparent god-like being with an acid-stained face, a braided pony-tail and a childish, Latka Gavra-esque accent, who has written a series of books on telepathy between dog and man, the most recent of which he describes as “really revolutionary.” Fichtner is an eternally underrated actor and, here, reliably game, but his material is more obnoxious than inspired, however well it plays off an enervated Plotnick. Our star does an enjoyably sour twist on the harried crap magnet; it’s he, not the “plot” or even the occasional genuinely insane gag — including one about tapping into the memories of dog poop (!!) — that keep “Wrong” just barely puttering.

 



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Dogs are capable of feeling jealousy - U.S.…

By Curtis Skinner(Reuters) - Dogs are a man's best friend, and research released on Wednesday says canines want to keep it that way.Dogs are capable…

Local

G train riders brace for five-week shutdown

G train service will be suspended between Brooklyn and Queens between Friday, July 25, and Tuesday, Sept. 2.

International

Peaches Geldof's death was drugs-related, coroner rules

LONDON (Reuters) - The death of Peaches Geldof, the daughter of musician and Band Aid founder Bob Geldof, was drugs-related, a coroner ruled on Wednesday.The…

Local

Family, supporters gather in Brooklyn for Eric Garner…

Family members gathered on Wednesday for the funeral of Eric Garner, who died shortly after police put him in a banned chokehold as they arrested him.

Going Out

Where to go drinking on National Tequila Day…

Thursday is just close enough to the end of the week to make you envision yourself already sunning on a beach towel or lounging by…

Going Out

Things to do in NYC this week: July…

Performing arts A 70’s Summer Night Friday, 6:30 p.m. The Green Building 452 Union St., Gowanus $35, 347-529-6473 Party like it’s summer in the 1970s…

Going Out

5 must-try dishes at Edible Manhattan's Good Beer

Rooting out the exotic amid the New York City bar scene is noble quest. But if you’d like to have it all come to you,…

Books

Art imitates life (almost) in David Shapiro's new…

David Shapiro talks about his book, "You're Not Much Use To Anyone."

NFL

Jerry Reese confident with Giants, skipping countdown clocks…

Last year, Giants GM Jerry Reese installed a countdown clock in the locker room to inspire Big Blue to play in their own stadium for Super Bowl XLVIII.

MLB

Brandon McCarthy finds his calling on Twitter

Yankees starter Brandon McCarthy joined Twitter three year ago for the same reason many people do: to get news quickly.

Sports

NBA great LeBron James sends 800 cupcake apologies…

By Kim PalmerCLEVELAND (Reuters) - NBA star LeBron James, whose recent return to the Cleveland Cavaliers in his home state of Ohio sparked a frenzy…

NFL

Fantasy football: Johnny Manziel could give your running…

Fantasy football: Johnny Manziel could give your running game a boost

Food

Recharge with a post-workout smoothie from Nicky Hilton

Some people can roll out of bed right as their alarm goes off. And that alarm isn’t set for 20 minutes before they have to…

Education

Colleges are increasingly embracing the concept of gender-neutral…

  Northwestern University recently made headlines after announcing that it would be installing two gender-neutral bathrooms in the university's student center. “These are two gender-open…

Career

How to prepare to interview for your dream…

    Congratulations! You landed a job interview at your dream company! A lot of hard work has gone into determining which companies to apply…

Style

The shirtdress is a summer must-have

  We love throwing on our boyfriend’s shirt and a pair of jeans (no matter how much he grumbles that it’s his turn to wear the…