Jennifer Garner in Butter

What exactly is Butter? Is it a mock-heroic portrayal of a small town woman’s overblown political aspirations? A domestic story about a man addicted to strip clubs? An inspirational tale about a hard-luck orphan discovering talent and motivation? From what can be discerned by watching its new trailer, Butter would appear to be all of these things. And it would also appear to be a semi-comedic look at the world of competitive butter carving (which is a real thing, and totally worth a Google).

At first glance all of that seems likely to be, both figuratively and literally, pretty messy. Can one movie pull off packing in this many disparate plot threads without losing focus and collapsing under its own weight? And are we really expected to watch a comedy about people carving butter that isn’t being brought to the screen by Christopher Guest and his usual cast of players? No, under most circumstances Butter wouldn’t look like a movie worth giving a chance at all – but just look at that laundry list of great people involved.

First off, you have its director, Jim Field Smith, who already exceeded expectations with his lame-looking previous effort, She’s Out of My League. If he could take unappealing subject matter and make it surprisingly effective in that movie, he should at least be given the chance to do it again here. Then there’s Jennifer Garner, who seems to be reaching Reese Witherspoon in Election levels of annoying as the ambitious housewife, Olivia Wilde, who seems to inherently get what’s funny about being a sleazy stripper, funnymen Rob Corddry and Ty Burrell, who don’t get the chance to show up in features nearly enough and seem to be bringing a promising amount of laughter to this one, and a handful of dependable others too numerous to name.

Our own Kate Erbland saw the film back in November at AFI FEST, and didn’t seem too taken with it, saying it was “fine enough as cinematic additive, a little extra salt on an otherwise flavorless comedy, but the film doesn’t hold anything meaty enough to sink your teeth in.”

After a long wait between its making of the festival rounds last year and now, Butter is finally set to open in US theaters on October 5. Is its awesome cast reason enough for you to give it a go and see what it’s all about? [Yahoo! Movies]


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