All's Well That Ends Well
Sid Straw is now one of my favorite movie characters. Thanks to writer/director Scott Abramovitch for deciding to do a screen adaptation of Michael Kun’s “The Lochlear Letters” and casting actor Tony Hale as the bungling protagonist in his entertaining movie titled Eat Wheaties! Full disclosure: I always like to cheer on the underdog in a film. Nothing makes me happier than watching a loser overcome his/her disadvantages and become successful. (Could I be under a My Fair Lady spell?)
Hale makes a perfect Sid Straw in Eat Wheaties! I didn’t think of “Veep” for one minute while enjoying this unusual comedy. Hale transforms himself into Sid. This is flawless casting, in my opinion. Plus, the film moves along with just the right pace. The first half shows us how Sid gets in big trouble by not knowing much about Facebook, and the second half delights us by detailing what he does to deal with the dreadful results of his actions.
A movie with a heart of gold,
“Eat Wheaties!” is a tale well told.
We feel sad for an awkward guy
who loses everything. Oh my!
We want something to come out right
for poor Sid Straw, who’s not too bright.
Tony Hale makes Sid come to life
with his mistakes and his great strife.
All actors here are fun to see.
The poignant humor got to me.
Social media takes a punch.
Deservedly would be my hunch.
Don’t worry, folks, for Sid wins out.
How that happens earns a loud shout!
“Eat Wheaties!”-- a feel-good movie
gets a Thumbs Up and cheers from me.
The engaging plot revolves around movie star Elizabeth Banks, who does not appear on camera. (In Kun’s book, it was Heather Lochlear.) Banks and Sid attended the same college and at the same time. As one of the co-chairs of an alumni reunion, Sid tries to contact her on Facebook to tell her about the reunion. He remembers her catch word for saying goodbye is “EAT WHEATIES!” When he doesn’t hear back from Banks, he keeps posting on her Facebook page, pouring out his heart to her, which goes viral.
This ends up with a restraint order plus loss of job, car, abode, bank, etc. One of the film’s highlights is a comical courtroom scene featuring Sid’s new lawyer played by Paul Walter Hauser, who almost steals the show.
The rest of the cast adds to the movie’s fun, especially Elisha Cuthbert as Sid’s surly sister-in-law and Sarah Burns as his wary ex girlfriend.
According the great Bard, “All’s well that ends well.” Happily, that’s exactly what happens in Eat Wheaties!
(Released by Embelle Films. Not rated by MPAA.)