Feeling like you need a Mad Men fix with the season (half) over? Then maybe you can get that with Are You Here, the directorial debut of Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner. The trailer above is our first peek at this comedy-drama, one that's already played the festival circuit in a drastically different form and is slated for release August 22nd.
Watching the trailer - courtesy of Yahoo! - you'll recognize Owen Wilson opening things up as a slick weatherman making a super-inappropriate joke, suggesting he's a little too much of a hot-shot at his job. And there's Zach Galifianakis coming to pieces once again over the death of a loved one - in this case his father. Wilson and Galifianakis play best friends, so when Galifianakis attempts to cope with the loss, it's up to Wilson to take him on one of those road trips that only happens in the movies, where no one has any work or family commitments.
The trailer seems to give away (?) the twist that Galifianakis inherits everything instead of his sister, played by Amy Poehler. This presents a problem because he is Zach Galifianakis, and presumably his entire life is in shambles because Hollywood won't let the poor guy play someone well-adjusted. Still, there is a good, solid trio of funny performers capable of dramatic depth leading this cast. Are You Here also stars Laura Ramsey, Jenna Fischer, Edward Herrmann and Peter Bogdanovich, so Weiner's got a nice ensemble in place. One oddity: not a single person from Mad Men. Obviously, Weiner is not handcuffed to the hit AMC show, but you'd think he'd poach someone from that decorated cast. Maybe Christina Hendricks. It wouldn't hurt to put Christina Hendricks in everything. They should have called Christina Hendricks. Christina Hendricks would have been great in this, and in every other movie ever.
Are You Here had a rough go of it last fall when word circulated through the Toronto International Film Festival that it was a bust following its premiere. But reportedly Weiner has re-edited the film and changed it so significantly that it doesn't even have the same title - it was originally called You Are Here. Frankly, both titles seem pretty bland, but this doesn't necessarily look like blockbuster territory, so maybe a small character piece that we all catch on VOD isn't the worst fate for a movie like this. Besides, as much as we love Zach Galifianakis and Owen Wilson, why don't you do yourself a favor and sit down, parse their IMDb pages, and count all the truly terrible movies they've done. It''s like looking straight into the sun.