Despite Its Premise, Humpday Isn’t Really About Gay Sex

Lynn Shelton's Humpday, a sexual sitcom, opens with a pair of breeders in bed. A youngish married couple, Ben (Mark Duplass) and Anna (Alycia Delmore), confess that they're too tired to procreate that night and then confess their mutual relief. As if in response, the doorbell rings at 2 a.m. and Ben's long-lost college buddy, Andrew (Blair Witch Project survivor Joshua Leonard), stumbles in. Anna, who has never had the pleasure, watches the unexpected bromantic action with grim incredulity. Aggressively loud, demonstrative, and hairy, Andrew is a credible representation of Ben's id.

The lost weekend is steeped in sexual anxiety. Friday night, Ben has to retrieve merry Andrew from a house called "Dionysus"— home to a bi cutie and an omnisexual assortment of roisterers. No orgies, but plenty of stoned dancing. Anna, who has prepared her signature pork chop dinner, sits home alone. She stews; Ben gets stewed. Prompted by news of an amateur porn festival Ben finds himself proposing to co-star with show-off Andrew in a mad art project, dude-on-dude action, totally straight, yet somewhere "beyond gay." Maybe they'll be famous. The only problem: Just who is going to bone whom?

Having thus invested its protagonists in a game of "chicken," played to justify their respective life choices, Humpday delivers some excellent situation comedy.

Details

Written and directed by Lynn Shelton. Starring Mark Duplass, Alycia Delmore, and Joshua Leonard. Rated R.

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Just as Brüno is more a comment on celebrity culture than the love (or hate) that dare not speak its name, Humpday is actually less a queer comedy than a satiric view of macho. Appreciative as Shelton may be of her dudes, she has another agenda. Each in his own way, the guys have been freaked by a manifestation of assertive female sexuality — although the term "pussy-whipped" is never used.

Humpday is a movie of close camera placement and seemingly improvised dialogue. Everything is "awesome" unless it's "weird" — which is how it feels when the dudes meet for their tryst, set up the camera, and strip to their boxers. "We need to let our bodies take over," one hazards. With everything building up to the spectacle of two (straight) guys getting it on, Humpday is ultimately about itself. Shelton claims that she contrived an open ending. What happens? Don't ask, I won't tell. Suffice it to say that, last seen beating their midriffs like apes, Ben and Andrew confront the fear but not the desire.

 
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Al
Al

The worst movie I've ever seen.I want my 10 bucks back

 

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