‘Folk Hero & Funny Guy’ Never Finds its Rhythm or the Laughs

Folk Hero & Funny Guy

There’s nothing much new in Folk Hero & Funny Guy, a comedy from writer-director Jeff Grace. In the film, two lifelong friends embark on a road trip and over the course of their journey hash out a number of conflicts old and new while learning valuable lessons about themselves along the way. There have been countless variation on this kind of story. What it lacks in originality it makes up with between the chemistry of its two leads in Wyatt Russell and Alex Karpovsky, both of whom are given assists by some of the film’s colorful cameos.

Paul (Karpovsky) is a struggling comedian, performing his set in front of scattered crowds at open mics. Jason (Russell) is rock star, touring the country in sold out arenas and living a life of constant partying and womanizing. As Jason is experiencing immense levels of success, Paul’s engagement to his fiancé has just disintegrated and he’s thinking of returning to the world of advertising and abandoning comedy. The rock star is about to embark on a solo acoustic tour and invites his childhood friend to open for him with his stand-up comedy set. Along the way, Jason also invites Bryn (Meredith Hagner), an aspiring musician, to join their tour. This starts to sow the seeds of tension among the friends, as Paul takes a liking to Bryn only to be surprised when he finds out Jason has hooked up with her. As the tour continues to progress, the rift between friends grows wider as Jason is constantly surrounded by adoring fans while Paul’s comedy doesn’t quite land with audiences.

Early on it’s easy to get a sense of where Folk Hero & Funny Guy is going and it never deviates from the track. At least the chemistry between Russell and Karpovsky is able to slightly mitigate the unoriginal scenario, and the casting is rather impeccable. Russell has certainly inherited some charm from his father and his big personality along with his hairy visage certainly has him looking the part of some modern folk star. Karpovsky has the misanthropic feel of a struggling stand-up comedian. He does a good job at playing it kind of passive at first before eventually having enough of his longtime friend.  There’s a comradery that he shares with Russell that allows Folk Hero & Funny Guy to retain some semblance authenticity among its more unimaginative moments.

Folk Hero & Funny Guy does something that is all too common in movies where a character is a stand-up comedian – his set just isn’t the least bit funny. Part of that is the point, as Paul is a fairly stubborn character and is set in his ways as to his approach to his material. Time and time again, though, people remark on how funny this character is and the material provided to an obviously game Karpovsky never illustrates that. So much of the film’s comedy falls flat that it has to rely on a cameo by David Cross as a DJ at a public radio station to salvage one of the film’s later scenes with jokes that actually work.

In the same way that the comedian just isn’t particularly funny, Folk Hero & Funny Guy is unable to do much with its dramatic content, most of which is rote and predictable. However, there’s a late cameo by Melanie Lynskey where the actress arrives and provides the film with an emotional spark it’s has been missing for much of its running time. There are times where the movie shows glimpses of what it could’ve been but these moments are fleeting and elusive.

Jeff Grace shows an eye with some visually effective moments, such as the film’s opening split screen. He never finds the rhythm that would make Folk Hero & Funny Guy sing like it’s capable of. Even as it’s falling flat dramatically or comically, at least he was dead on with his impeccable casting that really goes a long way in making the film consistently tolerable in its most uninspired moments.

Shop Deadpool tees in our officially licensed Marvel store!

Leave a Reply

Animation/Anime Interviews Animation/Anime News Animation/Anime Reviews Film/TV Interviews Film/TV News Film/TV Review
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
The Cast and Crew of ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales’ Discuss the Latest High Seas Adventure

Captain Jack Sparrow and his merry band of misfit pirates are...

Two of the Greatest Wrestling Movies Come to DVD & Blu-ray in ‘Vision Quest’ and ‘American Wrestler’

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has done a huge service to every...

96 Souls
’96 Souls’ is Silly, Nonsensical Sci-fi

It’s never a good sign when a movie opens up with...

Enabled Gaming Gaming News Gaming Reviews
Thicker Than Water Review
10.0/10
Telltale’s The Walking Dead: A New Frontier Episode 4: Thicker Than Water Review

The Walking Dead: The Telltale Series – A New Frontier Episode...

New Frontier Season Finale Trailer
Telltale’s The Walking Dead: A New Frontier Season Finale Trailer

The Walking Dead: The Telltale Series – A New Frontier Season Finale...

Nex Machina
Housemarque Games Reveals Release Date for Nex Machina

Housemarque Reveals release date for arcade-style twin-stick shooter, Nex Machina, set...

Comic Creator Interviews Comic/Graphic Novel News Comic/Graphic Novel Reviews Manga News Manga Reviews Novel/Novella Author Interviews Novel/Novella News Novel/Novella Reviews
8.0/10
Ninjak #27: Royal Adder

Ninjak #27 Written By: Kevin Maurer Art By: Cafu Release date: 5/24/2017 I’ve...

8.5/10
Batman/Shadow No. 2 Continues the Crossover Coaster

Title: Batman/Shadow #2 Writers: Scott Snyder and Steve Orlando Script: Steve...

9.5/10
Read Image Comics’ ‘Redneck’…Trust Me (SPOILER FREE)

Title: Redneck #2 Writer: Donny Cates Artist(s): Dee Cunniffe and Lisandro...

Apparel/Personal Maintenance News Apparel/Personal Maintenance Reviews Entertainment Product News Entertainment Product Reviews Food/Beverage Reviews Hardware News Hardware Reviews Mystery Box News Mystery Box Reviews
Doctor Who
The May 2017 Doctor Who Block from NerdBlock is a Timelord’s Bounty

NerdBlock’s Doctor Who block is a must for any Whovian. There...

JINX Overwatch Apparel
New JINX Overwatch Apparel to Celebrate One-Year Anniversary

Celebrate Overwatch’s One-Year Anniversary with brand new JINX Overwatch Apparel from J!NX...

DC Collectibles Reveals New 2018 ‘DC Artist Alley’ Line At Five Points Festival

From DC Collectibles – Designer super hero toys — meet street...

Arena Football Automotives MMA, Kick Boxing & Boxing Professional Wrestling
Epic Fighting 34 Results

Friday, May 12, 2017 – Epic Fighting took place at their...

King of the Cage Heads to Black Bear Casino Resort on June 9 for ‘Fire Starter’

RANCHO CUCAMONGA, CA. (May 10, 2017) – King of the Cage, the leader...

James ‘Lights Out’ Toney to Face ‘Lightning’ Mike Sheppard in his Final Fight

YPSILANTI, Mich., May 4, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Main Event Professional Boxing,...

Adult Continuity Comics on the Can Cultural Junk Drawer Future Comic Rock Stars Is That Racist? Revisiting the Reviled THAT'S NOT ROTTEN! The B-Reel The Cantina Scene This Week in Crowdfunding What the HELL Did I just...?
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Cultural Junkdrawer – Season’s End: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 4 is everything it’s been building up...

Wonder Woman
Is That Sexist? – ‘Wonder Woman’ Marketing Maybe/Maybe Not?

There is only one month left until one of DC Comics’...

Adult Continuity Issue Nine – Ten Inch Mutant Ninja Turtles

The porn parody has a long, hard, turgid and difficult to...

Event News Event Reviews
Phoenix Comicon 2017 logo
Phoenix ComiCon Props Update

The Phoenix Comicon had to make massive changes to the costuming...

Id10T
ID10T Music Festival + Comic Conival Announces First Wave of Panels

ID10T Music Festival + Comic Conival Announces First Wave of Panels...

Disney Channel, Disney XD & Disney Junior Announce Events for D23 Expo

From D23 Expo – BURBANK, Calif. (May 17, 2017) – Disney...

Gaming Uncensored Toon-In-Talk
Gaming Uncensored: Year in Review 2016

A look back at the year in gaming.

Gaming Uncensored Roundtable: December 2016

December’s roundtable discusses story in games with Chad, Josh, and Spencer....

Gaming Uncensored: Podcast #349

Jamie reflects on some of his time with the HTC Vive....

Music Interviews Music News Music Reviews
Lahna Turner’s ‘Limeade’ is a Hilariously Haunting Comedy Album

Many people are roll their eyes at the idea of musical...

Prince’s ‘Deliverance’ Reminds Us of Who We Lost

On Friday, April 21st, it will be one year since we...

Sabroso Fest, How can you go Wrong with Beer, Tacos and Lucha Libre!?!(Photo Gallery)

The Sabroso Craft Beer, Taco and Music Festival sponsored by 95.5...