Divorced, still-aspiring comedienne Jean (Brenda Blethyn) fears that her family ties will sever when her inexperienced, 20-year-old son Tim (Khan Chittenden) finally lands a girlfriend (Emma Booth, Tara Reid's more-talented Australian doppelganger). Meanwhile, Tim works to keep an eye on his mentally handicapped brother Mark and keep in touch with his ex-country singer dad.
Big question: Do the Dwights feel like a real family or a group of goofballs cooked up for onscreen laughs?
Catch it: "Dwights" really gets the awkwardness, fear and fun of budding relationships, from the first sexual discoveries to the mixed signals that delay the action from happening. Also palpable is Jean's resentment towards the kids that took her attention away from her career, resulting in a tight leash that may not give her sons the chance to be has-beens like their parents.
Skip it: If you can't stand to see the integrity compromised of Kirsten Dunst's cheerleader comedy, "Bring It On." Mark can't help but be intrigued by the somewhat more adult spin-off, "Get It On."
Bottom line: Like Jean, the movie's sense of humor could use some sprucing up, and ditto for Cherie Nowlan's somewhat dull direction. But this charming little number keeps its quirks in check as a family comes together, with an authenticity that you can't buy with a bigger budget.
Bonus: Any women who have felt insecure about their breast size--or significant others who have listened to the woes--can be reassured by Tim's admission to Jill (Booth): "If they were any bigger, they could be a bit frightening."
Matt Pais is the metromix movies producer.
'Introducing the Dwights'
Directed by Cherie Nowlan; screenplay by Keith Thompson; produced by Rosemary Blight; photographed by Mark Wareham; edited by Scott Gray; music by Martin Armiger; production design by Nell Hanson; produced by Rosemary Blight. A Warner Independent Pictures release; opens Friday. Running time: 1:44. MPAA rating: R (for sexual content and language).
Jean - Brenda Blethyn
Tim - Khan Chittenden
Mark - Richard Wilson
Jill - Emma BoothCopyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times