Released in August 2011, an entry into the Sundance Festival ‘Our Idiot Brother’ was then picked up by the Weinstein Brothers. Starring Paul Rudd as protagonist Ned Rochlin who gets arrested for selling, actually giving away, weed free of charge to a cop. I guess that really says it all, a stupid thing to do to say the least. However as the film goes on Ned doesn’t seem as stupid as he’s made out to be, it’s just that he has to much faith in human kind. It’s hard not to fall in love with Ned, his naivety is based upon a mixture of being incredibly dubious to the obvious and his belief of giving everyone the benefit of the doubt. (Something we lack these days but then again maybe we have reason to…)
Being released from prison Ned has no choice but to turn to his mother and his sisters after being dumped by his girlfriend. Ned does his best in avoiding living with his mother, by moving in with each one of his sisters, as they pass him off onto one another as he ‘ruin’s’ each sibling’s life. Our idiot brother hosts an ensemble of female talent played by Zooey Deschanel, Elizabeth Banks, Emily Mortimer, Rashida Jones and Shirley knight. Paul Rudd known for his comedic roles usually plays the nonchalant sarcastic guy, never the butt of the jokes but the guy who dishes it out. But here Rudd is the complete opposite, he is constantly looked down on by his sisters who see him as pathetic, the only woman that really sticks by his side is his mother and she’s always clutching a large glass of wine.
There is definitely a divide between worlds here in the Rochlin family, Ned is a hippy content being an organic farmer needing only the love of his dog, where as his sisters are absorbed by the urban lifestyle of keeping up appearances. Ned enters his sisters’ perfect domesticated lives and inadvertently delivers them home truths. Once their false images of life are shattered, they turn on Ned and place the blame rather than taking any responsibility for their own failures. Ultimately Ned is thrown into an urban environment to which he does not or perhaps he cannot conform to.
Our Idiot Brother Trailer
Ned: "I like to think that if you put your trust out there, I mean if you really give people the benefit of the doubt and see their best intentions, people will rise to the occasion."