A Good Old Fashioned Orgy

A Good Old Fashioned Orgy

Directed by: Alex Gregory, Peter Huyck
Cast: Jason Sudeikis, Tyler Labine, Leslie Bibb, Nick Kroll, Lake Bell
Running Time: 1 hr 35 mins
Rating: R
Release Date: September 2, 2011

PLOT: A group of friends who have known each other for years, decide to have one last bash. The theme they settle on … orgy.

WHO’S IT FOR? Yes, it pushes the boundaries with the orgy theme, but beyond that it’s reminiscent of Indian Summer or Wet Hot American Summer.

EXPECTATIONS: Sudeikis can be charming enough, but I had a bad feeling this would be one of those indie films about an “orgy” without an orgy.

SCORECARD (0-10)

ACTORS:

Jason Sudeikis as Eric: He’s the lead wolf. It helps that Eric’s dad (played by Don Johnson in a bit part) owns the perfect summer home. You know what? Sudeikis does feel like a leader here. It works. He’s got a laid back, casual thing going here. Eric’s personal journey is all about opening up and that’s fine and good. Most importantly, if you’re going to a party, you want Eric in charge.
Score: 8

Tyler Labine as McCrudden: If Eric is the lead wolf, McCrudden is the little pup. Yes, his Zach Galifianakis belly will definitely get some laughs. What’s interesting here, and the film actually does this so subtly, McCrudden is the leader, he just doesn’t know it yet. Just watch the way he studies like crazy in preparation for the orgy.
Score: 7

Leslie Bibb as Kelly: There is a great first flirtation between Eric and Kelly. Sure, she’s pregnant at the time, but it’s cool since they’re at a White Trash Party. Kelly is the dream girl. Sure, Bibb can pull this off. At the same point there seems some missed opportunities to know who she is besides being perfect. One example would be when she notices all of Eric’s friends have dildos at a bar. No real joke or reaction comes out of this.
Score: 6

Rest of Cast: Kroll really came through as Adam. He plays more of a nerd than an ass here (compared to his character on “The League.”) If there is any heart in this film (and I think there is) it comes from Kroll and Lindsay Sloane who plays Laura, a teacher with body issues. Alison (Bell) plays a woman who psychoanalyzes a little too much, but there’s some humor from her dysfunctional relationship. Sue (Borth) is hot for Eric which gives a nice extra layer to the orgy. Martin Starr plays Duquez, a wannabe rock star, who is one of the few who has an “almost” good reason to want the orgy. David Koechner shows up in a Will Ferrell/Wedding Crashers-type cameo. You know who kills it? Will Forte and Lucy Punch as a married couple who still wants to be part of the old gang. It’s a huge cast. Some get lost, some stand out. That’s normally what happens.
Score: 6

TALKING: They get the little moments down pretty well. Laura, the quiet teacher, says “they pay us poop.” Again, this is a toss away line but it proves each character has a voice. I’m kind of shocked I didn’t learn new sex terms. Sure, they talk about tea-bagging, but everyone my age (mid 30s) knows what that is, right? No talk of donkey punching or a dirty Sanchez. That’s a missed opportunity. Eric tries to get everyone fired up about an orgy with an inspired Goonies speech. There is a definite truth Eric brings up about ’80s teens and AIDS. Everyone was scared away from crazy sex.
Score: 7

SIGHTS: Yes, the beach house is killer. When Eric and McCrudden visit the sex club, it feels out of place compared to the rest of the film. Once again, even though it’s an orgy theme, it seems tame. The white trash party that starts things off is pretty funny. My favorite part is Eric’s tattoo. It simply says “Tattoo.”
Score: 6

SOUNDS: “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” kicks things off at the white trash party. Biz Markie’s “Just a Friend” makes a big appearance. There’s no ’70s porn music? Big mistake.
Score: 6

PLOT SPOILERS

BEST SCENE: Will Forte as Glenn and Lucy Punch as Kate get ready for the orgy. They have to sneak in, since they weren’t invited. They heard it was an Indian theme. The problem: dot, not feather.

ENDING: They run the course of the orgy.

QUESTIONS: Eric goes over to Kelly’s place, finds out she’s on a date, and really seems heartbroken when pizza arrives. Why does he care pizza arrives? Why? Besides that, it’s not really a movie with lingering questions except for the fact that it’s going to be awkward the next morning, month, year, life … right?

REWATCHABILITY: Sure. Plus, with comedies I’m always curious what ends up on the cutting room floor.

OVERALL

It’s the vibe of saying goodbye to summer. A Good Old Fashioned Orgy gets that vibe right. That’s why I compared it to Wet Hot American Summer or even Indian Summer. Yes, I know Indian Summer is technically about the fall, but that’s the fall of their youth. Cut me some slack people. I know what I am doing.

With Orgy we have a group of friends, who are luckily all single before the clothes start coming off. Actually, only the ones who trade partners are single. That’s one of the things I noticed about this film. Besides going to a sex party, it’s kind of tame. The film doesn’t show how they go about trading partners, or the guaranteed awkwardness of the day after an orgy. Look, I don’t want a “how to” but there is a laid back sweetness with A Good Old Fashioned Orgy. A Good Old Fashioned Orgy is a nice way to say goodbye to the summer of R-rated comedies.

FINAL SCORE: 7/10

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