Hip, Edgy, Sexy, Cool Review
By Christopher Null
Robert B. Martin Jr. and Aaron Priest's Hip, Edgy, Sexy, Cool promises that you'll never look at commercials the same way again, and damned if they aren't right on the money. The indie film, directed by and starring the duo, is a classically styled mockumentary about casting commercials (aka very short films), which might sound like a stupid topic but turns out to be hysterically funny.
Martin and Priest take on the roles of The Monkey Brothers, hipster-doofus casting directors who are hired for their biggest job ever -- a commercial for "Salsa Gusto," a daring product out of Salt Lake City of course, with its new ad being helmed by a highly sought-after director. It's a plum gig -- only the Monkeys don't have a bone of ability in their bodies, both earning D- grades in "casting school" at the local technical college. In fact, when it comes time to pick out the head shots they plan to audition, the origin of their Monkey moniker drives the point home.
Hollywood isn't really this ridiculously idiotic, but it's damn close. Martin and Priest have clearly been around the business for awhile (in fact, Martin starred in a Pace salsa commercial once) -- probably too long for their own good, by the looks of it. But the resulting dementia has prompted one of the funniest independent films I've seen in ages, filled with hilarious dialogue, all delivered with deadpan perfection by our principals, who, if I didn't know better, would swear weren't even in on the joke.
Thank God the film is professionally made, and even in the slower parts, there are a slew of semi-celebrity cameos to watch for (the production notes claim 200 such appearances) -- including Playmate Victoria Silvstedt, Danny Masterson (That '70s Show), Danica McKellar (The Wonder Years), and Bodhi Elfman. The film just premiered at the Nodance Film Festival. Good luck with it, guys.
Facts and Figures
In Theaters: Friday 12th July 2002
Cast & Crew
Producer: Robert B. Martin Jr.
Also starring: Aaron Priest, Currie Graham, Bodhi Elfman, Danica McKellar, Danny Masterson, Giuseppe Andrews, Clifton Collins Jr., Holly Fields, Kris Nicolau, Marc Chiat, Kinka Usher, Robert Hegyes, Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs, Victoria Silvstedt