Cyrus Film Shows Evolution of Comedic Giants
By Todd A. Smith
Over the past few years, John C. Reilly (Step Brothers) and Jonah Hill (Get Him to the Greek) have immortalized themselves as comedic giants. Nevertheless, what was once missing from their stellar careers has now been found as the pair combine their great comedic timing with a vulnerable and seriousness not seen in their other films.
The new Cyrus film, which also stars Academy Award winner Marisa Tomei (My Cousin Vinny) as Molly, shows the evolution of their careers and proves that they are talented enough to succeed in multiple genres of film.
Despite the fact that the film does not specifically target the African American community and does not have a diverse cast, the film’s theme is universal and the message will cross all racial and ethnic lines.
Molly (Tomei) is a single parent to an adult son Cyrus, played by Hill. Like many single parents she struggles with the complexities of dating for a woman in her situation. How will a potential boyfriend interact with her son and would a boyfriend have a problem with sharing time with her?
John (Reilly) also finds himself in a predicament that many have faced in the dating game. After a heartbreaking divorce, how does one get back into a dating game that they have not been a part of for many years?
What struck me profoundly was the (sometimes strangely) close relationship Cyrus and Molly had, from him walking in on her in the shower to a somewhat sensual wrestling scene at a park.
Nevertheless, their relationship is very indicative of the close bond shared between single mother and son, especially if the mother conceived the child at a very young age. Often, a mother in Molly’s predicament has been the mother, father and best friend and letting someone enter that bond is extremely difficult, especially for Cyrus.
The character played by Hill devises hilarious schemes to separate Molly and John from fake panic attacks to wielding a knife at a terrified John.
Despite the fact that we get to see a vulnerable and serious side of Hill and Reilly for the first time, comedy is still their best asset and the Cyrus film will definitely have audiences laughing in the theater aisles.
However, what most audiences will take away is the immense growth both actors show and the enormous talent that I did not know they possessed.
Unfortunately, the only fault that keeps the Cyrus film from being an excellent film is the subpar cinematography. Such talented filmmakers should do a much better job in the visual presentation of such a universal film.
Nonetheless, audiences everywhere should enjoy the Cyrus film, even if they are not a huge fan of their earlier works like Talladega Nights and Knocked Up because the two prove the key to making a good film are those universal themes that everyone has to tackle at some point in their life.
Cyrus just so happens to tackle themes that I do not believe is addressed enough and that is learning how to let go and let love in.
Smith is publisher of Regal Black Men’s Magazine.