Whether he’s taking a stand against KFC bowls in his standup act, lampooning sports-obsessed weirdos in Big Fan, or snarkily dismissing small town group think in Young Adult, Patton Oswalt has firmly established himself as being one of the preeminent critics of modern culture. Nature Calls keeps that momentum going by casting him as a man in an epic struggle against the rampant douchebaggery running wild in our youth.
The basic story is this: Oswalt plays a Boy Scout troop leader frustrated with the modern generation’s lack of interest in things like going outside and not staring at a screen all day. Johnny Knoxville plays his brother, the sort of manic idiot whose idea of being a role model is loading kids full of sugar and showing them bum fights on Youtube. This impasse of ideals leads to Oswalt kidnapping a crew of rambunctious children and forcing them to spend time out in the woods doing the sorts of things that men do. An epic manhunt and “Lord of the Flies” shenanigans soon follow.
Still, the big question surrounding a movie like this isn’t necessary how accurate the mirror it holds up to society is, it’s whether any of the satire actually ends up being funny. Honestly, while Nature Calls looks like it could contain another one of those performances where Oswalt saves things a bit by injecting pathos into places you wouldn’t expect, this red band trailer doesn’t paint the film as having very many laughs. Is it an accurate portrayal of the way kids talk these days? Sure. Does it have an air of slapstick nuttiness? Yeah. But it didn’t make me chuckle.
You can check out the trailer for yourself now to see if it strikes you any differently. And if so, you can then catch the movie on an early VOD release starting October 4, or in theaters on November 9. [Yahoo! Movies]