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Placebo   C-

Avant Guard Films

Year Released: 2002
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Director: Jim Connell
Writer: Jim Connell
Cast: Jim Connell, Karen Coltin, Angel Connell, Bryan Brennan, Dan Sullivan, Christine Nilson, M'Lissa Marty, Ellen Weisberg, John Cammarata, Bee Brahm.

Review by Michael Scrutchin

A 30-minute parody of fitness infomercials, Placebo hits all the easy targets without breaking a sweat. That's part of the problem, since it's never as edgy or as funny as it wants to be, taking uninspired swipes at the way infomercials prey on our insecurities while trying to convince us that their product will fill that void in our life and make us a better, happier, and more attractive person. In this case, the product is a miracle pill that helps people get in shape without any inconvenient dieting or exercise. Using PlayStation-worthy computer animation, writer-director Jim Connell effectively apes the style of ridiculous infomercials with two nonsense-spouting co-hosts pimping the product and showing before-and-after testimonials. Unfortunately, it gets tiresome after about 10 minutes, when it becomes clear that the film doesn't have much to say beyond the obvious. Moreover, most of the jokes fall flat. Then again, there's no way Placebo could have been as wickedly funny as the real thing.

Review published 01.01.2003.

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