Starring Zoey Deutch, Joey Morgan, Adam Scott, Kathryn Hahn, Tim Heidecker
Whether or not Flower is hitting theaters in the wake of Lady Bird’s success might never be known. However, Flower provides a stark contrast for audiences to see the difference between two female perspective coming of age stories. One is meant to inspire, touch audiences and reach beyond comedy and entertainment. This one is a mess of screenplay, acting and a socially insensitive dark comedy that makes light of sexual assault. It’s basically a “SXSW film” that I have a feeling wouldn’t be getting released theatrically without Lady Bird’s popularity to pivot from.
“Where did you learn to giver a hummer [head] like that,” the opening line of the film. “Middle school,” 17-year-old Erica (Deutch) replies, rising from the lap of a local sheriff. Erica is “earning” money, blackmailing local perverts out of cash to bail her father out of prison. She lives at home with her mom (Hahn) who is cool with her sexual activities and just tells her to hide that book of penis drawings she keeps adding to each night. When her soon-to-be step brother comes into her life after his stint in rehab, she finds a new project. Luke (Morgan) is suicidal, overweight and depressed. When Erica finds out he was molested by “hot older guy” from the bowling alley, she has a new victim in her sights.
There isn’t much depth in the characters or the plot to engross the viewer past the rolling of credits.
You have three bro-type millennial males, behind the screenplay, who have “part of the problem” written all over their IMDB profiles. One of those writers, a producer on Ingrid Goes West, at least has a legitimate credit to his name. The character of Erica is nothing more than an immature male fantasy. “Dick is just like a thumb without a fingernail,” her standard excuse for her love of oral sex. The story takes wildly unpredictable and albeit unreasonable turns that keep the audience intrigued just enough to finish this 90-minute indie.
There isn’t much depth in the characters or the plot to engross the viewer past the rolling of credits. Flower is a lightweight film that doesn’t shine a light on any particular subject matter or emotion beyond “the hot girl hooks up with the weird guy”. Even comedian Kathryn Hahn is playing another stereotypes version of the many characters she has embodied. As usual she must reside within the limited screen-time that only offers her “weird mom” and nothing more.
'Flower' is a perverted male fantasy film that never blooms into anything substantial.