Mr. Woodcock

Rated 2.0

In Mike Judge’s social satire Idiocracy, the movie audiences of a dumbed-down America 500 years in the future were making box-office boffo out of a movie called Ass, which was nothing more than two hours of the eponymous ass being an ass. Mike Judge was being an optimist by putting the devolution so far off. With the quaintly titled Mr. Woodcock, the marketing seems solely based on the bone-headed title and a poster presenting star Billy Bob Thornton holding a couple of basketballs in a suggestive manner. Hardy-frigging-har. The big problem here is that the movie doesn’t bother to deliver the goods to anyone who might be lured in by that bait. Instead, we get a tepid comedy involving a successful writer coming home and becoming horrified to find that his mother is set on marrying the titular coach who made his life a living hell back in high school. Decent premise, lazy execution. The laughs are sporadic and the story drags in between. The depressing aspect is that Thornton gets to slum in these roles between better stuff, but it’s looking like this is all that is left for Hollywood past-her-shelflife Susan Sarandon (as the mother).