Beyond Fright Review: OLIVER, STONED

OLIVER_STONED_ITUNES_2The man child is a concept that feels pretty heavy in male driven comedies, more in particular to those starring Seth Rogen and Adam Sandler. Adult men who refuse to grow up and partake in toilet humor rack up box office tickets and seemingly influence a generation of young adults surrounded by statistics provided by memes that have gone viral on social networks. The philosophy of instantly sharing to thousands within seconds instills the need to swallow without tasting or giving a second thought as to what is being ingested. These comedies are providing the same after taste: not much thought went into it, but you’ll be spitting the best one liners to your friends.

After going to break a 50 at a convenient store, Oliver (Seth Cassell, dressed and made up in his best Seth Rogen) comes back to find the car he was hired to bring back to his dad’s detailing business due to “some love juice in the back seat” disappears. As his high wears off, Oliver steals an ice cream truck in attempt to finding the vehicle. He starts by getting stoned again, meets Megan (Brea Grant) whose scooter he destroys (“You ran over my scooter with your ice cream truck!”) and embarks on a comedic journey involving blind, perverted clowns (or a face painting alcoholic?) and some fourth wall breaking moments.

Brea Grant gives some adorable nods to the audience familiar with her work as she starred in the hit TV show HEROES with Kristen Bell, who I always thought resembled the other, and, in OLIVER, STONED, her character writes VERONICA MARS fan fiction, which is the show that catapulted Bell’s career as the title character. Another interesting nod is that Robert Curtis Brown shows up here as an officer. Brown had a memorable cameo in Rob Zombie’s HALLOWEEN 2 as one of Dr. Loomis’s not so big fans, another film that costarred Grant. Her performance as Megan even gives the same sly smirk as Mars and utilizes her Neptune High methods in aiding Oliver on his investigation. With a recent cameo in the blockbuster sequel PITCH PERFECT 2, Grant is proving to hold her own in comedies and I hope to see her show off those chops.

One of the strengths of OLIVER, STONED is the use of female characters. They don’t play as mere sidekicks, playing as eye candy for male viewers. Without Megan, Oliver probably would have never gotten off the couch and her brains are what carry the events. Even Oliver’s evil stepmother, Jennifer, delivers some memorable lines (“I don’t wait for no man, bitch!”) and obviously carries the upper hand in her relationship. This makes OLIVER, STONED a bit more invigorating compared to other man child comedies.

For a stoner comedy, OLIVER, STONED is remarkably cute. Yes, there are some vulgar moments, but the film is more tame than expected and might not be for those seeking more of the obscene that is often associated with this kind of material. This is definitely not a movie to ingest and continue to come back for more, but worth a taste as its intentions is well mannered and even manages to reveal a little heart inside. Oliver says it best when it comes to what man child movies need, “I need a dad, not a bro!”

Leave A Comment