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`Weekend' couldn't be any weaker

June 09, 2006|Robert Abele | Special to The Times

Already feeling like a moldy time capsule from an era when gross-out humor ruled the multiplex, the sex-prowl comedy "The Long Weekend" also sports a gimmick straight from the days of repurposing stock footage for cheap "B" movies. Here, producers wanted a movie that would use the broadcast-inappropriate leftovers from "America's Funniest Home Videos," mostly graphic shots of animals in heat, groin mishaps and bodily fluids.

Screenwriter Ted Safran and director Pat Holden's result is the excruciatingly unfunny tale of love-unlucky ad exec Ed (Brendan Fehr), who endures endless indignities in hopes of sexual conquest, with the home video clips acting as metaphorical recall (a la HBO's "Dream On") because they represent Ed's personal library from years as an amateur videographer.

Although I like the tangential notion that most of the world's humiliation footage came from one johnny-on-the-spot camcorder dude, it's still hard to feel pity for a character who once had a fascination with the sex habits of zoo creatures. Then there's Ed's horn-dog brother (Chris Klein), who makes it impossible to get through a minute of screen time without some vile slang for the female anatomy.

The blooper reel at the end could have brought the abasement full circle had it shown the filmmakers enduring some noxious humiliation of their own, but no such luck. Their names in the credits will have to suffice.


`The Long Weekend'

MPAA rating: R for pervasive strong and crude sexual content, gross-out humor, language and brief drug use.

Director Pat Holden. Screenplay Tad Safran. Producers Paul Brooks, Shawn Williamson. Director of photography Brian Pearson. Editor Martin Brinkler. Running time: 1 hour, 30 minutes. Exclusively at Laemmle's One Colorado Cinemas, 42 Miller Alley (inside plaza, Fair Oaks at Union Ave.), Pasadena (626) 744-1224; Fairfax Cinemas, 7907 Beverly Blvd. at Fairfax Ave. (323) 655-4010; Fallbrook 7, 6731 Fallbrook Ave., West Hills (818) 340-8710.

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