Movie review: Utah-made stoner comedy 'Ben Banks' is too disjointed

Published December 7, 2012 8:31 am
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

This is a message to Bryce Clark, the writer-director of the made-in-St. George comedy "Ben Banks": Your movie's awful, dude, but don't give up on filmmaking.

The low-budget caper tells of a real-life stoner dude named Ben Banks (who plays himself here) who seeks his journalism degree and stumbles into a blackmail plot — while simultaneously romancing Amy ("The O.C.'s" Mischa Barton), a barista with a shady past.

Bryce, your script is disjointed, bouncing between dumb gags involving Ben's slacker buddies to dumber gags with the idiot blackmailer (Michael Hobert). The film also tries to draw laughs with faux-wacky non sequiturs, like the characters who declare themselves Mormon while they smoke cigarettes and suck down coffee.

But Bryce, you know your way around a camera, and Barton's charming performance shows you can work with pros. Chalk this one up to experience, Bryce, and start polishing your next script.

movies@sltrib.com; http://www.sltrib.com/entertainment


'Ben Banks'

Opens Friday, Nov. 30, at the Megaplex 20 at The District (South Jordan); not rated, but probably PG-13 for sexual content, drug use, mild violence and language; 85 minutes.



Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
comments powered by Disqus