How do you sell a movie that’s earned the dubious distinction of having one of the highest walkout rates in recent Sundance memory? Well, if you’re the marketing team behind Rick Alverson‘s The Comedy, by defiantly playing up the horrified reactions in your own trailer.

Starring Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim of Tim and Eric and James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem, The Comedy is a super dark, super dry look at the exquisite pain of being a young(ish) wealthy white dude in America. Watch the trailer after the jump.


[via First Showing]

Playing up the negative buzz is an unusual tactic, but one that suits this apparently unpleasant movie to a T. The Comedy doesn’t sound like the kind of film that’s going to work for everyone, and it’d have no business trying to pretend otherwise. A strategy like this is bound to get some attention, which isn’t a bad thing for a smaller indie.

Heidecker stars as Swanson, a 30something Williamsburg hipster on the verge of inheriting his rich dad’s estate. Indifferent to the prospect (and really to life itself), he spends most of his time rattling around Brooklyn with his like-minded pals, played by Wareheim and Murphy. As the trio grow bored with their aimless existences, they push their behavior to ever uglier limits in an effort to get the universe to push back.

Even the most admiring reviews comment on how excruciating this movie is, but on the flip side, even several of those who hated it seemed to find an odd genius in it. The Huffington Post, whose comment about walking out was featured prominently in the trailer, admitted that the movie was “on second thought, kind of brilliant.” Yes, the leads are utterly loathsome, but that’s not exactly a negative when it’s done by design; as the New Yorker notes, “it’s hard to hate Swanson more than he hates himself.”

The Comedy hits VOD October 24, and select theaters November 16.

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