The unofficial Upright Citizen's Brigade movie
Extreme comedy is what Martin & Orloff is all about. That's the only way it could be, when you introduce your main character by having him clean up the blood pool from his suicide attempt. Dark is not the word for a comedy with so much suicide. But comedy it definitely is. Successful comedy? Well...
Martin (Ian Roberts) tried to off himself following the not-to-be-discussed "Eggroll Incident," but now, he's been released from the mental hospital, and is back at work, where he designs costumes for corporate mascots. But he still needs help and is recommended to Dr. Orloff (Matt Walsh), who may be the worst doctor in the world. His first question of Martin is ridiculously blunt, and he follows it up by skipping out to a softball game. Of course, he drags Martin along, kicking off a road trip around New York City, which is a bit of a stimulous overload for a guy just getting back into society.
This is a bit of a screwball comedy, so everyone Orloff knows is an oddball, from co-dependant stripper Penny (Amy Poehler) to his Gulf War veteran pal Keith (Jon Benjamin, "Home Movies"). The plot that is weaved around them, loosely at best, is one of the oddest recorded to film in a long time, as it involves girl scouts, spare ribs, an exploding bridge and a giant penis. Throw in a host of cameo appearances, including David Cross, Andy Richter, Tina Fey, Janeane Garofalo and Rachel Dratch, and it should be a surefire cult hit.
Unfortunately, much of the movie relies of cliche comedy or slapstick action, especially the final act, and the cameos hardly get to be truly funny. Only Benjamin, who is playing something of a live-action take on his "Home Movies" character, Coach McGuirk, gets to cut loose and perform a UCB-worthy role. If not for the presence of the four members of the UCB, the film would feel like any other comedy group could have been behind it. Of course, when you have Amy Poehler playing a stripper (sadly, sans nudity), does your movie need anything else? I'd have said no before, but now I know the truth. It could use a bit more comedy.
The audio, presented in Dolby Digital 5.1, sounds clear, but there's nothing noticeable as far as directionality or other sound effects. The dialogue is the main feature of this mix, and it is very well done.
Outside of the commentary, the majority of the bonus features on this DVD are in the form of deleted or miscellaneous footage. Unfortunately, most of these are short and/or pointless. Dinner Theater Bloopers might give Garofalo, Fey and Dratch more screentime than the movie itself, while a short clip of makeup tests is an unusual inclusion, as any entertainment value is a hidden factor. There's also the amusing "Astronaut Striptease," which sounds more interesting than it is.
Anyone who enjoys David Cross' Tobias character on "Arrested Development" will recognize at least part of Dan Wasserman, his possibly gay/definitely effeminate character here. A pair of deleted scenes featuring him are funny, but too short. Also cut was the film's alternate ending, which showcases a certain castmember's secret mad skillz. It's included for a one-time thrill, just like the trailer, which gives away much of the film's comedy.
Also included is a four-page booklet with satirical chapter descriptions, which folds out to a Martin & Orloff board game with the same sense of humor as the movie.
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