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Garden State

Director:  Zach Braff
Year Released:  2004
Rating:  1.0

Oh-so-precious vanity project by Braff, whose idea of direction is placing himself in the center of the frame, thinking sad thoughts and staring off camera someplace. The film tries for 'deep emotional resonance' but fails horribly - it's about an actor returning home to bury his mother, running into various goofballs (an epileptic with a taste for the Shins!, a man who dresses an armor!) and convincing himself the world's a giant circus filled with idiots that can only be appreciated when viewed from a distance. The trouble is, the quest for pathos or meaning is a fraudulent one (they even - hold on for this - yell into a frickin' abyss at one point ... but does the abyss yell back?); New Jersey is no weirder than any place else.

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