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Movie Review: ‘A Good Old Fashioned Orgy’

(Jason Sudeikis and Tyler Labine are among the stars of "A Good Old Fashioned Orgy.")

(Jason Sudeikis and Tyler Labine are among the stars of “A Good Old Fashioned Orgy.”)

Wine_Bill--NEW Bill Wine
Bill Wine has been KYW Newsradio’s movie critic since 2001. You can...
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By Bill Wine
KYW Newsradio 1060

Plot? Who needs a plot?

Not the R-rated comedy A Good Old Fashioned Orgy, which delivers just what its title promises and nothing more.

Jason Sudeikis stars as Eric, the de facto leader of a group of thirtysomethings who have been friends since high school and have long enjoyed gathering whenever possible for elaborate theme parties at his family’s summer home in the Hamptons.

But then Eric’s dad, played by Don Johnson, announces that he’s putting the house on the market.

2 Movie Review: A Good Old Fashioned OrgySo Eric and his cronies — played by Tyler Labine, Leslie Bobb, Michelle Borth, Martin Starr, Nick Kroll, Will Forte, and Lucy Punch, among others — go into panic mode.

Acknowledging their arrested development and wanting to strike a blow in the name of generational sexual deprivation, they decide to say goodbye to their twenties and their playground by saying goodbye to their inhibitions and throwing the titular promise on Labor Day weekend.

But this bacchanalian soirée will differ from its predecessors by being just for their intimate little group of close friends — which is about to get a lot more intimate.

There is, however, one minor complication for Eric — the Georgie Porgie who’s hosting this orgy — which crops up in the fetching form of his realtor, played by Leslie Bibb, for whom Eric would appear to have uncharacteristically serious feelings.

So he better not spill the beans to her about you-know-what.

Neither narratives nor runway models come any slimmer.

Co-screenwriters Pete Huyck and Alex Gregory (who have specialized in television comedy, including “King of the Hill,” “Frasier,” “The Larry Sanders Show,” and “Late Show with David Letterman”) make their co-directorial debut in this mildly raunchy, fitfully funny, but largely aimless and implausible farce.

Sudeikis — who has been doing excellent comedic work on TV’s “Saturday Night Live” for years and came off splendidly as one of the co-leads in the recent Horrible Bosses as well — employs a commendable light touch, something that’s never as easy as it seems.

He anchors the film with a relaxed, assured performance that makes him the first among equals without stepping on anyone else’s toes.  And he helps to raise the film’s precarious reality level.

But his efforts still fall woefully short of making us care about any of this.  We never quite escape the feeling that the leading man is, through no fault of his own, underemployed in this underdeveloped and self-consciously outrageous divertissement.

So we’ll celebrate 2 stars out of 4 for this say-bye-bye-to-summer sex romp.  A Good Old Fashioned Orgy is not that good, hardly old, and barely fashioned.

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