Running time: 82 minutes
Screenplay: Jared Hess, Jerusha Hess
Director: Jared Hess
Starring: Jon Heder, Tina Majorino, Aaron Ruell, Jon Gries, Efren Ramirez, Sandy Martin, Haylie Duff
|Napoleon Dynamite: too cool for school.|
And then, well, nothing much. Their lives go on in their oddball way. Napoleon makes a friend in new arrival Pedro (Efren Ramirez) and there is an attempt to make Pedro class president. Kip joins uncle Rico in his work as a door-to-door salesman and there is a love interest in Deb (Tina Majorino). What people sometimes fail to realise is that most corners of the world are like this – small, uneventful and full of people that don’t fit the definition of ‘normal’. I would imagine that this, as out there as it is, might be closer to most teenagers' realities than High School Musical ever will be. And while the events may be small, they are big to the people they’re happening to. It’s quite touching at times, like the dance which Napoleon shares with Deb, who is there as Pedro’s date, and one of the final scenes where he’s not alone for once on the tetherball pole.
|Deb's hair, like most things in this film, seems to be stuck in the 80s.|
Much was made of the dance routine near the end, in which Napoleon steps up and supports his friend Pedro in a genius skit showcasing Jon Heder’s gift for physical comedy. However, for my money that is upstaged by the moment uncle Rico throws a steak in Napoleon's face. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen anything funnier.
Certainly not everyone's cup of tea, but worth a punt.
Unsurprisingly this got rather a mixed reception on its release; see this fairly positive review by Adrian at the BBC and this one from Edward isn't without misgivings.