I have been looking forward to Napoleon Dynamite since it came out in limited release and I was unable to catch it at the theater. I was actually a bit disappointed in it. I think this whole “indie” thing may just have become an excuse to do a lame film. If it is “indie” then a good film is regarded as brilliant and an average film qualifies as good. Had this been a Hollywood release, it would have been a bad film… because it was an “indie,” it was a decent little flick.
Napoleon is really a one-trick pony… the one trick is quirkiness. Jon Heder as ND, is a funny skit and even a funny short… but it ends up a bit tiring after an hour and a half. The movie salvages its ramble to nowhere with a good ending… (in Hollywood terms, that would be an “average” ending.)
It was fun, but I only chuckled out loud once or twice and there was absolutely nothing worth howling about. A far cry from “You’ll laugh till it hurts” – Peter Travers (Rollingstone Magazine)
At first blush, it appears to be a film about the triumph of the little man, but in the end it is a film that makes fun of non-conforming, non-cookie-cutter people in the saddest “let’s laugh at the nerds and dweebs” way possible. All of the humor is at the expense of those characters which do not fit the “made for TV” mold.
RATING 5 out of 10