Jesus Henry Christ
"Jesus Henry Christ" suffers from a death on the vine combination of trying too hard and missing the point, completely. With the box office frothy with indeed pleasurable indie films like "Lola Versus," "Lawless" and "Safety Not Guaranteed" some indie films can completely not flutter, as with a misshapen "Jesus Henry Christ."
Independent cinema has, in general, become better than ever with superior actors like Michelle Williams ("Take This Waltz") and Emily Blunt ("My Sister's Sister") coming out to do excellent work in films that historically have low budgets. But with Dennis Lee's new film that all dangles below the water even with favorite Toni Collette, who comes across as undirected and truly adrift from her character.
The story revolves around a young boy, Henry, who not surprisingly started speaking before he turned 9 months and for no apparent reason starts to trace his birthroots. Discovering, in, yes, another unoriginal moment, that there are secrets skulking Henry somehow constructs an untried family scenario. The humor is often too dark for the time spent explaining it and so loses its effect, probably the sadness of this almost warm hearted comedy.
Toying with magical realism or perhaps trying to be humorous through risible dialogue could be what the director intended, but that doesn't come through even on the interview with him on the Bonus Content section of the DVD. Bonus content also includes interviews with actors Michael Sheen, Toni Collette, Jason Spevack and a few more.
Although an official selection for the Tribeca Film Festival with a pair of great actors the film cannot break free from its contrived desperation to be different, to shock, to appear eccentric.
"Jesus Henry Christ"