7.5
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Cyrus Review

June 18, 2010  |  2:40pm
<em>Cyrus</em> Review

Release Date: June 18
Directors/Writers: Jay Duplass, Mark Duplass
Starring: John C. Reilly, Jonah Hill, Marisa Tomei, Catherine Keener
Cinematographer: Jas Shelton
Studio: Fox Searchlight

John C. Reilly enters the bizarre love triangle

Moderately famous for barely-there budgets and heavily improv’d dialogue, the Duplass Brothers are thrust into the spotlight with A-List actors and studio financing in Cyrus, their latest venture. As delightfully awkward as its predecessors The Puffy Chair and Baghead, this rambling confessional plumbs the depths of neuroticism with Woody Allen-like precision. The plot follows downtrodden divorcee John (John C. Reilly) as he falls for an enchanting woman (Marisa Tomei) who’s unhealthily devoted to her adult son, Cyrus (Jonah Hill). The greatest moments in this codependent ménage à trois come from Hill’s outrageous manipulations; the Napoleonic man-child threatens John with a barrage of passive-aggressive hilarity, climaxing in harassment via “Subterranean Homesick Blues”-esque signs. While the Duplass benchmarks of hyper-realistic performances and blurred camerawork are intact, the film lacks their adventurous sense of imperfection. But if Cyrus helps expose their off-kilter approach to a wider audience, this missile of unsettling honesty is an excellent starting point.

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