Tuesday, July 21, 2015

"Wingman, Inc.": a formulaic sex comedy whose concept is apparent from the title

Wingman, Inc.” (2015), directed by Choice Skinnner, is a new situation comedy about the concept in the name:  that is, a man who helps less secure men pick up women, or, conversely, a woman who helsp companions fend off undesirable men.  I don’t think this concept would find much application in the gay community.
So the natural question becomes, what happens when the wingman (Bobby, played by Kristopher Turner) and the wing-woman (Kristy, played by Erin Cahill) meet, and maybe have a romance?
Admittedly, the comedy is pretty silly.  Bobby has a business as a dog psychiatrist, that doesn’t bring in enough to pay the rent (or pay back student loans) in modern Los Angeles.  There are plenty of cute and imposing pooches, especially a Shepard named Parker (inspired by Richard Parker in “Pi”, maybe).  So the Wingman business may help with the bills and keep him from getting evicted.
Bobby has a creative roommate Bud, who smokes bongs in his pad.  Bud is played by Reid Ewing, who appears with a modest beard for the first time that I recall.  Later Bud cleans up and plays a constructive role in Bobby’s renovation.  Ewing seems to be playing a sequence of supporting roles in smaller films, many of them comedies.  I still don’t know what happened to the release of “South Dakota”.

Reid's role doesn't bring him much into direct contact with Bobby's "patient' dogs, but that's ironic; Reid is well known for his interest in rescuing animals (Facebook post from Utah here). 
This film is not as successful as “10 Rules”, because it simply is a little slow and not quite goofball enough to transcend itself.  I guess Bobby has just the right amount of hair on his chest, so that he can survive a botched mugging near the end. The Coen Brothers were not consulted about how to shoot that. 
The closing "wedding sequence" and epilogue of fast-moving post-establishing shots does present an interesting idea for cinematic narrative. 
Lionsgate has a site for the film here ; the site listed on imdb does not work.
I watched it on Amazon instant play ($4.99 in HD).   It can be rented on YouTube for $3.99 from Lionsgate. I sometimes find that the Amazon feed can stall (delivering video) when Netflix always works – is that because Netflix payed Comcast for the fastest lane?

Picture: LA along the 405 (not far from Reid's own "Traffic Jam"), Angelino Hotel, my trip, 2012. 

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