The last thing the world needs right now is another independent, character-driven dramedy, but The Vicious Kind looks like it’s sort of earned its place in the world. The film is about Caleb Sinclaire, played by Adam Scott, a cynical and psychologically hurt man who keeps women out with a world-weary wit. These kinds of movies always include the girl, Brittany Snow as Emma, the girlfriend of Caleb’s younger brother, playing the redemptive force in the movie, and the father, played by JK Simmons, who sometimes looks like he would either be the best or worst father in the world. Simmons has that gruff quality that makes him so good in harsh business or military roles but also can employ a very soft, tender, fatherly side.
The film received best screenplay and best lead actor nominations for the 2010 Independent Spirit Award and so far this year has been making successful rounds at the film festivals – at Denver, director Lee Toland Krieger won best emerging filmmaker, and at New Orleans, the film won best picture. The trailer is actually a few weeks old, but the film is just now getting a lot of press on internet blogs, and though it looks like it relies on pretty standard comedy and drama conventions, the trailer manages to be pretty funny anyway, so it should be worth checking out. It is a little late since it opens tomorrow in select locations, but it’s better late than never.