I Heart Huckabees
Gene Siskel always maintained that you should never make a movie about people the audience can’t stand. I loathed the characters in I Heart Huckabees. They are jittery, shallow, stupid, and agitated, and that’s exactly how they make the viewer feel. The whole movie is so anxious and you just want to scream at the screen to tell everyone to shut up. Since the characters are constantly trying to find themselves in a new agey style of self-discovery, you’d think that at one end, either the beginning or the conclusion, that they were or they became tolerable, satisfied people. But, no, they are just annoying and they find new ways to be annoying by the end. Half-baked theories about the connections in the universe and how coincidence relates to us ought to accompany a Yanni CD, not a movie by the guy who made Spanking the Monkey.
Mark Wahlberg is slimy, selfish, and pushy, and still sounds like a high school kid pissed about not knowing his lines. Jude Law is self-centered, obnoxious and phony. He is supposed to be the opposite of Jason Schwartzman, his enemy in the film, and by the end, he’s taken on his characteristics, reflective, pretentious, and lost. Schwartzman makes the trade-off as well, but I’m not sure it’s a benefit to anyone. Dustin Hoffman and Lily Tomlin are there to give lectures and cause trouble, basically announcing everyone’s character traits, because writer/director David O. Russell was apparently too lazy to develop them first, and took the easy way out.
I’m amused picturing Russell convincing Isabelle Huppert and Schwartzman that they should cover each other in mud and then dunk their heads in a mud puddle as a preamble to doggy style humping. That’s a scene you won’t see anywhere else.
The only laugh is a fantasy sequence where Schwartzman imagines himself sucking milk out of Law’s heaving, hairy breasts.