D.C. Farm Hands

On a plane, headed to Wisconsin, Democratic operative Gary Zimmer (Steve Carell) opens his laptop, pointing a browser toward Wikipedia – to research Wisconsin. Not even to Deerlaken, the county Zimmer’s headed for. Just Wisconsin. He’s clueless.

Even before the trip, Zimmer debated what car to rent on his arrival. What color to choose, what music to listen to. Anything he can use to fit in and pander to a small town, middle American farmer seen in a viral video stepping up for the Democrat’s values. It’s absurd.

Give Irresistible ten, maybe twenty years, and it’ll be clear this soft satire did not meet the current political moment. The Hunt did, with guns and grenades lobbed between sides, but Irresistible is too gentle. In much of its dialog, Irresistible is too obvious as well, including a late speech by Mackenzie Davis looking right at the camera, preaching about how Washington left these Wisconsinites behind.

Irresistible misses a lot in its carefully non-partisan approach

The comedy does have its share of zingers. Writer/director Jon Stewart left The Daily Show, but intersperses little skits to harangue the current zeitgeist. A convent receives flyers on government funded contraceptives because spreadsheets counted them as single women. The NRA hides pens from black youth, and in front of Jack Hasting’s (Chris Cooper) campaign signs, masked 20-somethings stand ready to revolt if he loses.

Irresistible misses a lot in its carefully non-partisan approach. Skewering both sides does work and it’s often genuinely hilarious. Come the (admittedly unexpected) finish though, Irresistible throws out the comic bite to blame systems, not a cacophony of misinformation, inherent biases, and noise. The message fits any era, not only this one, and strikes too broadly despite opening on a Clinton/Trump debate night.

That’s not to discredit the message, so much as how that message is delivered by numerous other messengers. It’s a story about people, while DC only sees numbers. What starts so minuscule with around six people in attendance soon involves SuperPACs, more dollars than ever flowed through Deerlaken, major news network coverage, and focus groups. Irresistible doesn’t note Deerlaken’s population. Taking a guess, since everyone knows each others names, it’s probably 100 or less. And it’s here Zimmer and rival Republican rival Faith Brewster (Rose Byrne) choose to stage their war.

Stewart skewers politics for the exploitative sham they are. The operatives prey on vulnerabilities, remember the names of every billionaire they court, but forget the sound guy who rigged up their candidate. If there’s equality, it’s only in the method, not the issues. Dueling mayoral candidates become pawns, nothing more, because no one in Deerlaken is a person anymore. It’s funny because it’s true. Mostly. Because in 2020, no town could survive this division.

Video

Shot digitally, post-production adds a slight grain filter to the image. It’s minor, but does create some encoding back-ups on occasion. A few artifacts slip in, diminishing fidelity, if only slightly. Mostly, the imagery holds to a clear, precise aesthetic. Solid resolution maintains consistent detail, resolving facial definition where possible, and giving Deerlaken a pleasing, old-fashioned sheen.

Color grading plays in warm/cool tones. That will impact interiors mostly, say in a bar or in a hotel room. It’s still noticeable in daylight exteriors, less so though. Primaries hit sharp density, giving flesh tones their needed kick. Red and blues make an appearance everywhere, from campaign signs to balloons. Those look great.

Often bright and perky, contrast plays into Irresistible’s tone. There’s lots of energy, leading to impressive depth. Black levels play a little safer, never quite dominant. Still, they work, stout enough in keeping dimensionality alive.

Audio

Being a dialog-driven comedy, it’s unusual for a scene to dig into the low-end like one partway through Irresistible. There’s a man visiting the campaign center in a goofy exosuit, and a joke plays to Jurassic Park’s water-in-a-cup moment. So does the bass.

It’s notable because… there’s nothing else really notable. A small dialog split in spots makes use of discrete channels. Otherwise, this DTS-HD mix rides the center.

Extras

A wonderful gag reel is a must watch, and the 20-minutes of deleted/extended scenes too. That doesn’t go for three EPKs, barely hitting 12-minutes combined.
Full disclosure: This Blu-ray was provided to us for review. This has not affected the editorial process. For information on how we handle review material, please visit our about us page to learn more.

Irresistible
  • Video
  • Audio
  • Extras
4

Movie

While far too nice to meet the current political moment, Irresistible still finds laughs in skewering the DC mentality.

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