You, Me and Dupree
You, Me and Dupree manages to keep us mildly amused, mostly due to Owen Wilson"s infectious charm. But unlike some of his other comrades in comedy, a lot of Owen doesn"t necessarily spell success.
Ah, the unwanted guest. It"s been the subject of many a movie. You know the kind: Messy, doesn"t respect your privacy, stops up the toilet, has sex with someone in your living room using butter and nearly burns the house down. That"s Dupree (Wilson) to a tee, and for newlyweds Carl (Matt Dillon) and Molly (Kate Hudson), having Dupree in their house is downright disastrous. At first, Carl is psyched to have his best man as his couch guest while Molly is less than enthused with Dupree"s well-meaning antics. But when Molly starts feeling abandoned by Carl"s workaholic tendenciesas he, in turn, tries to impress his demanding new father-in-law (Michael Douglas)suddenly Dupree"s good-natured personality and carefree wisdom is comforting to Molly, much to Carl"s chagrin. But don"t fret. This three"s-a-crowd scenario will work out some kind of resolution, as the loveable guest shows how a little inner Dupree-"ness" might just be one of life's hidden secrets.
With Dupree, Wilson is attempting to break away from the buddy comedies he"s known for, such as Starsky and Hutch and Wedding Crashers, in which he mostly plays the pithy straight man. There are definitely moments of true Wilson brilliance in Dupree, especially when he"s avoiding a building security guard by throwing "seven different kinds of smoke" at him. But playing off someone slightly wackier than himself is really Wilson"s forte and in trying to carry a whole comedy on his own, he"s not nearly as successful as say, Jim Carrey or even Jack Black. It also doesn"t help that Hudson and Dillon aren"t able to pick up the slack. Hudson is appealing as the beleaguered Molly, and Dillon seems to be getting better looking with agebut together, they are one big ball of bland, especially Dillon, who is sorely miscast as the straight guy. On the other hand, Douglas does a nice turn as the overprotective daddy who can"t let his little girl go.
Basically, Dupree is Wilson"s big vanity project. As the film"s main producer, the funnyman shopped the script by first-timer Mike LeSieur around and got a deal right awayno doubt based on Wilson"s previous moneymaking comedies. Directors Joe and Anthony Russo, brothers best known for helming Welcome to Collinwood as well as several episodes of TV"s Arrested Development, do the best they can with the Dupree material. But it"s a shame Wilson doesn"t have the same discerning tastes as his frequent collaborator, director Wes Anderson (The Royal Tenenbaums). You, Me and Dupree is just, well, ordinary, and no amount of Wilson mad-cap energy and wily antics can raise it up into the comedic stratosphere.
Hollywood.com rated this film 2 stars.