Matt Asleton’s Gigantic is a gigantic failure. Okay, it’s not that bad, but it was too easy to use that line. What Gigantic does suffer from, is this odd trend in the past 10 years that favors indie-films that are about as quirky as can be (see: Juno, Little Miss Sunshine, and a load of more poorly made films). When it comes down to it, there’s nothing that seperates this flick, from those that came before it.
Paul Dano plays Brian, a 28-year-old struggling with his identity. Get this: he works in a highend Swedish mattress store. Quirky! He falls for Happy (Zooey DesChanel), another mid-twenties kid who doesn’t know what she’s trying to get out of life. Her dad is insane (played by John Goodman), and he enables her because (it seems), her mother (played by Kim Basinger) is a rich, but deadbeat drug addict. Things get complicated when Brian is finally approved to adopt a baby from China, and throughout the film, there’s a strange hobo that follows him around, shooting him in the ankle and beating him up with lead pipes… So quirky.
DesChanel is hilarious, and this pigeonhole seems to fit her very well. Dano can’t seem to get his face to do anything but look wounded and sad. Goodman’s role is restricted to being a gigantic DB and doing quirky things like refusing to sit in cars, but instead, lays on a mattress in the back of his station wagon while others drive him around. All of the actors have proven themselves in earlier roles, so I’m guessing it’s the boring script by director Asleton and Adam Nagata that keeps any of the characters from being interesting or three dimensional. Despite being a comedy, there were less than three laugh-out-loud moments. A film this stagnant needs some resolution, but Gigantic refuses to give you any, so you’ll leave the theater completely ambivolent to what you just watched. It’s better than, say, Obsessed, but still, Gigantic doesn’t have much to offer.