Film Geek

First Run Features

The title figure in James Westby’s slight comedy is Scotty Pelk, a pathetic Portland cinephile whose universe doesn’t extend past an encyclopedic knowledge of film and a job at the local video store. Film Geek is supposedly based on Westby’s own experiences as a video clerk, so why does he encourage star Melik Malkasian to broadly overact and whine nasally like an Armenian Urkel? Scotty is such a creepy, one-dimensional nerd stereotype that sympathy becomes difficult to muster, even after he gets fired from the store, stumbles into a fruitless courtship with a cute girl who digs Cronenberg, and watches his movie blog go unnoticed and unread. One problem is that Scotty’s film-geek credentials are highly suspicious, especially when he labels David Fincher’s execrable Alien3 as “awesome.”