This was the first press screening Torontoist went to, and we walked in 10 minutes late entirely by accident, so you don’t have to listen to us on this one if you don’t want to.
Here’s what we guessed we missed: The main character, Ryan (played by Paulo Costanzo) meets a hot set-dresser while taking some photographs of a beached whale, begins his new job in which he takes the photographs and writes the stories of lottery winners for a lottery magazine, and finds out his dad was fired after 25 years of white collar slavery.
All of this conspires to give him a terrible sense of ennui that he tries to kill off by becoming everything he hates (a morality free zone). It obviously isn’t a sustainable solution, and so screenwriter Douglas Coupland has Ryan learn his lesson and ride off into the sunset (literally).
Now, we wanted to love this, and we didn’t end up hating it. It’s directed very well, and certain segments certainly do shine with a Couplandy worldview and humour, but the plot and characterization are, unusually, the weak points. “Wacky” parents with a grow-op (oh hey, Marijuana in B.C., how original). A “crazy” old Asian granny. A “zany” boss that just doesn’t get it. And so on. Many of the scenes are enjoyable and amusing, but there’s no strong backbone running through them. In this case, too, the backbone would end with a pathetic stump, with the speed Coupland rushes through the conclusion. Fun, very B.C. and almost meaningful, it’s a very near miss that still seems worth watching. 2.5/5