Customer Reviews: Humpday
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TOP 100 REVIEWERon January 24, 2011
It's all about expectations, and I had a very different set of expectations going into this film that were turned upside down and made the film a bit better than the film I was expecting.

From the trailer and description, I thought this was going to be a movie about two guys trying to make a pornographic film. I was pleasantly surprised to discover this was wrong, in fact there isn't any nudity, and the film is not at all about pornography.

Ben is a seemingly normal nice guy newly married to the lovely Anna. One normal middle class night, they are awoken by Ben's college friend, the Bohemian Andrew. Andrew represents the life that Ben secretly still wants no responsibilities; do whatever he wants with whoever he wants whenever he wants. The first half of the film was all about tempting Ben away from a normal middle class married life.

This film is full of surprises and discovery. The first half was nicely paced and I could see the conflict Ben was feeling. Andrew was light and breezy; he was a crazy fun mad man from college. As the second act played out, Ben became annoying, overanalyzing everything; and Andrew slipped into a more normal melodramatic character. Anna rose up as a very strong wonderful character, who changed as a result of the dramatic conflict she felt as she uncovered Ben's lies.

The part that I find amazing about this film is that there was virtually no script. According to the making of featurette, the actors improvised the entire film. The fact that the film was coherent and played so well dramatically is a big credit to the director and actors. The annoying part of the film was the whole question of will they or won't they? In the very last act, that question was asked way too many times.

This is an extremely low budget film. It appears to be a labor of love for the director Lynn Shelton. From my perspective, I think this film was less about relationships with the same gender, but more about being honest and envying what others have.

After watching the making of featurettte, it is amazing that this film holds together as well as it does. The production qualities are pretty good.

The film is rated R due to the subject matter and strong language. I don't recall any nudity in the film. And there certainly is no violence. For a parent that knows their child well, this film could be viewed by slightly younger viewers than the R rating says.

The DVD is full of some excellent special features. I very rarely think that the deleted scenes should be included in the film. However, I think each of those scenes were better than what ended up in the film. The making of featurette is a must watch film. The context of how and why this film was made is excellent.

This is not a film for everyone. I enjoyed it very much. If Lynn Shelton had cut out a few of the "should we" or "shouldn't we" moments and added the deleted scenes, I would have enjoyed the film more. For me, this was a thought provoking film.
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on March 18, 2015
Good exploration of relationships, sexuality, trust and the way view them. I expected this to be more of a silly comedy but the themes explored go beyond that assumption. The crazy idea of two straight friends having sex and filming it as "art" on a dare, is only the launching point of this interesting story.
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on December 2, 2010
The hetero male's fear of being thought gay is explored here as two college buddies get the bright idea to make an art porn film of themselves. Only they chicken out, of course. The wife does a great job, and the dialogue is really quite witty, while the two male leads get their expressions just right. No belly laughs. I guess you could call it a comedy of manners. Worth a watch.
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on April 20, 2014
When a kidulthood friend returned back into a life of a thirty-something happily-married movie-maker (or?),family man's life turns a party unexpectedly, conceiving a fresh idea of making a porno with a mate,

Also this art-producer had got some same-gender experience already, not much happened further besides wasting money for renting a hotel room to discuss opportunities possible in-between them,

If this work was about fashionably broadening the boundaries of sexuality, there is a really strong need for a couple of extra one-and-a-half-hour-parts to rich this goal.
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on May 20, 2014
...Even if he's all talk, as witnessed in the delightful little movie, "Humpday."

After first seeing Duplass in "The Puffy Chair," a film that he and his brother wrote, produced, and in which they starred, I was certain that the entertainment world would be saving a seat for this talented, new actor. Turns out I was right as Mark Duplass has been in numerous movies since then, as well as starring in an FX series, "The League."

Mark Duplass scores again, this time in "Humpday," a type of film project (similar to "The Puffy Chair") that employs improvisational, or naturalistic, dialogue. Films in this genre, sometimes referred to as "mumblecore," are aptly named, since the actors who appear in them often seem incapable of engaging in audible, intelligible dialogue, resorting, instead, to a sort of mumblespeak.

Fortunately, no mumble-speak messiness emerges in this film. Besides possessing the ability to communicate effectively, Mark Duplass and Joshua Leonard make improv seem effortless -- almost as though they are acting; paradoxical, isn't it?

Despite the implausible premise of the film, it has its genuinely hilarious, as well as dramatic, moments as the two friends (Duplass' and Leonard's characters) try to bring their idea of an unconventional art project to life. Their objective? To enter their "art" in the Humpday Festival, an annual event that attracts "Adult" content.

If the film has one flaw, it is the provocative plot and the turn of events that leads to a rather shallow resolution. This denouement, so to speak, may leave some viewers feeling dissatisfied or let down. Nonetheless, it's an entertaining ride watching Duplass and his co-stars adroitly circumvent any humps and bumps along the way in favor of delivering original, largely ad-libbed humor, convincing conversational scenes, and adept acting, minus the script.
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on August 8, 2012
Ben (Mark Duplass) and Andrew (Joshua Leonard), two old college friends, decide to create a work of art together--an amateur pornographic film of two straight men having sex.

Director Lynn Shelton and her cast go to a great deal of trouble to make the point that the protagonists are indeed straight and not closeted homosexuals, which makes the premise a little hard to swallow. However, they make it just about as believable as they possibly could. In the years since they last saw each other, Ben has become a responsible married man who is trying to have a child with his wife (Alycia Delmore)and, while not unhappy, has nostalgic yearnings for the freedom he once had. Andrew lives a bohemian life style, but he feels that he has accomplished nothing. The desire to prove themselves to each other and grasp at something missing from their lives leads them into this bizarre scheme, which culminates in a hotel room meeting that is a ballet of tension, discomfort, and honesty. The cast and director worked together to improvise their lines.
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on August 8, 2012
It's a little hard to believe that because of a dare, grown men would feel compelled to star in a skin flick! I suspect that deep down they wanted to do the skin flick but needed an excuse to "cover" their underlying motivation. Regardless of that, it's an entertaining film.
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on December 18, 2011
This is about the most useless and unentertaining movie I have ever seen. It opens with and interesting premise and goes absoultely nowhere... slowly.

I have rarely watched a movie without finding something redeeming. This is one of those times.
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on April 26, 2013
Confused. Maybe Im just a cardboard cut out. I don't get the dimensions of this film at all. (If you watch the movie, you will understand the review) Ironically though, I recommend saving your time... don't watch it.
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on November 22, 2009

Though we never really know why the two male leads care about each other, it becomes obvious when they reunite at the beginning of the movie that the husband has far more interest in his friend than his wife. It could be because the husband feels trapped in his mapped-out life, or that he has stronger emotional/sexual feelings for his friend (but let society walk him down his expected path), or maybe because his wife seems such a tight-ass.

When the movie gets the opportunity to explore this, it DOES go to a promised extreme conclusion that the two men will have sex. The movie leaves it tantalizingly ambiguous WHY this is going to happen (the wife thinks her husband just has to get the gay thing out of him!), but truly falters at this point.

The husband appears to want to go further; his friend cannot seem to. Their idea of using this project to further "express their love" loses it way, and they slip back behind societal boundaries of what is proper, correct, and masculine.

To me, there is nothing learned here than that straight men still don't have it together enough to be in love. In fact, the movie ends on the saddest note...that the friends will likely never be able to face each other again cross an emotional line.

So...not much of a comedy to me. A somewhat well-made study in homosexual panic taken to the edge...with the characters falling from the cliff.
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