In The Go-Getters, Jeremy LaLonde’s first foray into the twisted genre of dark comedies, audiences are convinced that misery really does love company; especially in the metropolis of Toronto.
Owen (Closet Monster’s Aaron Abrams) and Lacie (Pretend We’re Kissing’s Tommie-Amber Pirie) are strangers who are down-on-their-luck. He’s an unambitious squatter, she’s an obscene prostitute who has been dropped by her pimp. Together, they….well….they hate each other. They do, however, agree that they need to escape Toronto’s hustle-and-bustle and reset themselves. The only problem is they need $98 for bus tickets, and they’re both broke. Over the course of the movie, Owen and Lacie scrounge and scheme as they devise multiple master plans.
Drawing potential inspiration from FX’s long-running show It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The Go-Getters is an obnoxious movie with pathetic characters, but that’s sort of the point to its schadenfreude approach to comedy. LaLonde, Abrams, and Pirie are devoted to the film’s insanity; even if that means intentionally being unlikable for their audience. Owen and Lacie do not – and I repeat, do not – stop chirping at each other, but that means the film hits a bullseye when an insult cuts surprisingly deep or something unexpected happens that catches these unpredictable nuisances off guard. While the constant scheming skates close to becoming a form of monomania, LaLonde is savvy enough to know when to tilt the movie in another direction – either in a way that emphasizes the jokes or the anti-heroes desperation.
Then, there’s the metaphor that only a Torontonian could cook up. The city itself is an addiction. You can try and find your way out, but the city’s resources and population can have the power to pull you back in to a comfort you had distain for previously. The Go-Getters is Jeremy LaLonde’s most cynical comedy, but it might be his most relatable yet.
The Go-Getters screens at Toronto’s Canadian Film Festival on Saturday, March 24 at 8:00pm at Scotiabank Theatre.
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