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Outside Providence (1999)
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Review Date: September 01, 1999
Director: Michael Corrente
Writer: Peter/Bobby Farrelly, Michael Corrente
Producers: Peter/Bobby Farrelly, Michael Corrente, Randy Finch
Actors:
Shawn Hatosy as Timothy Dunphy
Amy Smart as Jane Weston
Alec Baldwin as Old Man Dunphy
Plot:
A young boy from the wrong side of the tracks gets busted for drugs and is sent to a prep school by his uneducated, vulgar, drunk of a father. While away, he discovers new friends, a girlfriend and more pot. Oh yeah...and he learns a few lessons too!
Critique:
I originally wondered why they had translated this movie into "Cannabis 101" for the French posters around town here in Montreal, but I wonder no more. Lots of pot smoking going on in here, people. That aside, this is a passable teen comedy with a neat 70s soundtrack, offering little original inspiration, save for the over-the-top, gruffy performance from Mr. Chesthair himself, Alec Baldwin. It basically treads no new ground in respect to the genre that it inhibits (coming-of-age), and made me curious as to how it ever got made in the first place (Can anyone say "Farrelly brothers!"). Having said that, the movie does contain some humorous sequences, one or two touching moments, and a lot of scenes showing kids smoking drugs and drinking booze. I guess you should see the movie if the general premise appeals to you, but overall, I would say that it's a rental for sure.

Unfortunately, despite some of the comedic sequences actually coming through in this film, the same cannot be said for its dramatic element. In fact, there seemed to be no palpable tension or any real obstacles to overcome for anyone in this movie. It just sort of floated along in front of my eyes, and then suddenly disappeared, just as the credits popped up. The tete-a-tete stuff vs the school supervisor was the least effective, since the man was once more, composed of little less than one dimension, while the romance with the girl was easy and unexciting at best. I guess that could actually be said about the whole movie as well. Easy and unexciting. Nice enough for a date movie, a few laughs, or a video rental, but little else. Hatosy reminds me of a young Peter Berg. One thing is for sure: DO NOT go into this movie expecting a "Farrelly Brothers comedy". It's a reincarnated coming-of-age dramedy, and that's about it. Baldwin rocks!
(c) 2016 Berge Garabedian
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