Monday, March 28, 2016

Who's the Caboose? (1999) - David Cross #9

First things first, I know I skipped The Thin Pink Line and Can't Stop Dancing.  They seem to be completely unavailable, to the extent that I can't even find a used copy of a DVD on Amazon.  So, for the time being, I'm skipping from #6 to #9.

Director: Sam Seder  
Runtime: 93 Minutes

Who's the Caboose stars Sarah Silverman as Susan, a young stand-up comedian from New York.  A student-filmmaker documentary crew decide to follow her around after their initial subject, a rare fatal disease afflicting the homeless, turns out to be too depressing.  Susan is about to head out to Los Angeles for pilot season, and waits until the night before her flight to tell her boyfriend, Max (writer/director Sam Seder), that she's leaving.  Max follows her out to L.A., where they meet up with her clueless agent (Andy Dick).  Max, a performance artist, constantly complains about how L.A. compares to New York City, before a sleazy entertainment lawyer (H. Jon Benjamin) makes Max the hottest pilot prospect in town.  Max's meteoric rise and fall, Silverman's quest to land a role in a pilot, and the effect on their relationship, make up the rest of the film.

The cast is fantastic, though some of the actors on the poster (Mark Maron and Kathy Griffin) have about a minute of screentime or less.  And honestly, as much as I like most of the comedians in this movie, they're not at their best here.  There were good moments, but overall it seemed like they were trying so hard to be subtle that they ended up suppressing the joke,  And the pacing stalled halfway through, which could be argued to be an artistic decision (Silverman's pilot search hitting a wall mirrored by the story slowing), but I don't think it works overall.  

David Cross plays "Jaded Guy," an actor friend of Max who is disillusioned with Los Angeles and, like Max, spends a lot of time comparing it unfavorably to New York.

Unfortunately, having been unable to find a copy of The Thin Pink Line and Can't Stop Dancing, I don't know if the chain of references between Cross films goes unbroken.  But there is one blink and you missed it reference to an earlier David Cross film:

If you're a die-hard fan of any of the comedians in this film, check it out.  Otherwise you can skip it.

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