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Review: Minus the honey, comedy ‘Buddymoon’ is a slog

“Buddymoon”
David Giuntoli, left, and Flula Borg star in “Buddymoon.”
(Gravitas Ventures)

Set in the majestic Oregon wilderness, “Buddymoon” may be one of the best-looking buddy comedies to hit the screen, but it’s a far sight from being among the funniest.

Even though it clocks in at a scant 78 minutes, this first feature by TV documentary director Alex Simmons, about a weeklong, male-bonding hiking trip, hasn’t packed enough plot or humor to distinguish itself amidst all that lush mountain greenery.

When the fiancee of actor David Zara (“Grimm’s” David Giuntoli) abruptly pulls the plug on their upcoming wedding, he opts to not let their planned Lewis and Clark expedition of a honeymoon go to waste, taking along his best man, Flula (DJ/comedian Flula Borg), in her place.

Unsurprisingly, the resulting trek isn’t without incident, with encroaching peril taking the various forms of hallucinogenic mushrooms, a traveling band of Renaissance musicians and rumors of experimental wolves pumped full of GMOs by the government.

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But the intended comic bromance, co-written by real-life buds Simmons, Giuntoli, Borg and Simmons, is neither sufficiently entertaining nor affecting to make for a memorable journey.

Equally problematic is Borg, a musician and YouTube personality whose constant, stream-of-consciousness, heavily accented rambles prove less amusing on the big screen than in his bite-sized Internet videos.

Ultimately it’s the backdrop that steals the show, with all the naturally lit, verdant vistas gorgeously captured by Simmons and camera operators Peter Alton, Michael Lockridge and Nick Wolcott.

Had the film and its poky lead characters at least managed to pick up the sluggish pace, experiencing “Buddymoon” wouldn’t have felt like such a slog.

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‘Buddymoon’

 Not rated

 Running time: 1 hour, 18 minutes

 Playing: Laemmle Monica Film Center, Santa Monica; also on VOD


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