Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Movies

‘Relaxer’ (review)

Produced by Ashley Young
Written and Directed by Joel Potrykus
Starring Joshua Burge, David Dastmalchian,
Andre Hyland, Adina Howard, Amari Cheatom

 

Whew. This is a tough one.

Just to be upfront, I recommend this film.

But it ain’t no popcorn-muncher; as in, please don’t eat while watching this film.

Relaxer opens with two brothers, obviously part of a dysfunctional family, in the middle of a “challenge”, in order to keep the unemployed Abner (aka Abbie) with a roof over his head.

This is 1999, leading up to the scary Y2K phenomenon.

He needs to keep playing a video game while downing semi-spoiled milk in 3 minute increments, with no bathroom breaks, etc.

It’s a grisly opening to a film that only gets more revolting.

Soon, scumbag older brother challenges slacker younger brother to a challenge to beat a video game master’s best: get to level 257 of Pac-Man, and he’ll win $100,000.

Dude accepts and sleazy brother exits.

The deal is, no getting off the couch, no bathroom breaks, you have til 1/1/2000.

So, Abbie sits on the couch, attacking the challenge, over months, without ever leaving said couch, encountering a handful of characters and events along the way.

Joshua Burge, looking for all the world like a slimy slacker version of Buster Keaton, is aces as Abbie.

He strikes a nice balance between helpless wimpiness and determination to win.

Still, when his idiot “friend” Dallas comes over, duct-taping two 2 liter bottles to his hands to make a point, Relaxer really gets tired and stupid.

There were several times throughout in fact that I wanted to turn the film off, due to the annoyance of the lead character being such a passive waste and taking the BS from his brother and friends. Yech.

Then something interesting happens. A character or two appears to be sympathetic.

Abbie puts on his 3D glasses, which seem to have some kind of power.

I have some quibbles: a major issue is never addressed regarding bodily needs during the challenge. Also, there are many stretches when he’s obviously not playing Pac-Man, but we hear the game in the background.

Not sure if this is commentary or oversight, but it IS annoying.

Lots of bodily fluids spray about, but the whole film is redeemed by the climax.

It’s partially derivative of a 70s cult classic, but the climax is still incredible, and makes up for a lot, and renders Relaxer a minor gem.

 

Relaxer arrives in theaters on March 22nd.

 

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

DISCLAIMER

Forces of Geek is protected from liability under the DMCA (Digital Millenium Copyright Act) and “Safe Harbor” provisions.

All posts are submitted by volunteer contributors who have agreed to our Code of Conduct.

FOG! will disable users who knowingly commit plagiarism, piracy, trademark or copyright infringement.

Please contact us for expeditious removal of copyrighted/trademarked content.

SOCIAL INFLUENCER POLICY

In many cases free copies of media and merchandise were provided in exchange for an unbiased and honest review. The opinions shared on Forces of Geek are those of the individual author.

You May Also Like

Movies

This time, terror comes from below … as well as a new Phantoms [Collector’s Edition] 4K UHD + Blu-Ray combo set arriving on July...

Movies

  People online are always talking about how they would never be able to make Blazing Saddles today. This, of course, is true, if...

Movies

Experience writer/director John Krasinski’s “heartwarming” (Joey Paur, GeekTyrant) and “hilarious” (Tessa Smith, Mama’s Geeky) original adventure IF when it arrives to buy or rent...

Movies

The trouble is, it’s just not true. This is a movie about how your grandparents were phonies and the city you live in is...