Since we were not initially allowed to blog a review of Grandma's Boy when we watched it last month, and since the film's not gonna be shown to critics (generally a sure sign that it's crap), we will attempt now to write about what we do remember from our preview nearly a month ago.
By way of introduction, a precept. When a joke is told, timing is important. The comedian must allow for a few beats of silence before proceeding with the dialog, or laughter will cause people to miss what follows next. Good movies time their comedy well, being careful to leave enough space after a big joke for the punch line to air out. Bad movies don't do this well. At several points early on in Grandma's Boy, a "joke" is told and the obligatory pause follows, except that nobody in the theater was laughing. Instead: crickets, pin drops, and a few uncomfortable coughs as people glanced at their watches.
Ironically, it's these early moments in which a joke bombs horribly that save the film from complete failure. Because these bombs happen near the beginning, the moviegoer's expectations are set to rock bottom pretty darned quickly. Once you're at bottom, ain't no place to go but up, setting the stage for some surprise attacks of humor that appear out of place, they're so good. There are some fantastic, tears-from-your-eyes moments, the best of which involves an illustration of onanism so extreme that the Roman Catholic church must surely object.