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Quite a Conundrum
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Quite a Conundrum (2012)

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Plot Summary:
"It should have been just a normal day of sex, fun, alcohol, hormones and debauchery for Tabitha and Mimi, two twenty somethings who care about nothing but themselves and what chaos they can cause. But that so-called normalcy gets tossed out the window when an unexpected and devastating event occurs at a nighttime pool party. As the alcohol begins to wear off and the body count rises, all hell breaks loose and there is no going back. As if the foul mouths, perverted attitudes and devious natures of Tabitha and Mimi were not enough, then just throw in Tabitha's walking porno of a boyfriend Sean and his new best friend, the sweet Dutch. Then mix in Mimi's eighteen year old virginal, confused and prudish sister Kylene and her sexually challenged boyfriend Harris, and the events gets even saucier. Then shoot in a splash of the old pervert Marc and his crazy unhinged wife Lola, and then toss in the Bible-thumping Jesus-freak Thelma, and it gets a little more crazy, dangerous, insane and scary."


Review by
John Townsend
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@CJohnTownsend
Review Date: 21 May 2013 My Rating: out of 5

 
 

I would normally open a review in this way but felt that this was the best way to sum up this film. On the IMDB website the tagline for Quite A Conundrum reads:

“Sex, drums, tequila, social networking, a pirate, morning after pills, Jesus and a gun....it's one hot mess”

The film basically tells the story of one day in the life of Mimi (Sasha Ramos) and her best friend Tabitha (Erin Cline). The day begins with Mimi in bed with her ugly, overweight, married boyfriend who just happens to be a partner in her father's company. After she rudely and insultingly dumps him he skulks off. Mimi and Tabitha then plan a pool party for that evening as the parents are away although the limited guest list includes just Tabitha's jock boyfriend Sean (Chris Greene), his friend Dutch (Joe Coffey), Mimi's confused sister Kylene (Emily Rogers) and her repressed boyfriend Harris (Anthony Rutowicz).

After consuming vast amounts of alcohol and while messing around in the pool a tragic event changes the tone of the evening and tempers and tensions rise rapidly.

I don't want to say too much more as anything else may be a plot spoiler but the tagline above tells you pretty much all you need to know. The thing is, Quite A Conundrum is a terrible film from beginning to end with one single mildly amusing moment which I will get to.

The biggest problem is that it just doesn't know what type of film it wants to be. It lurches from set piece to set piece with no tangible narrative or plot. In one part Quite A Conundrum might be a lewd sex farce, in another it could be a violent home invasion horror, later on it may be a dark comedy, but none of these elements combine to make a successful film. It is as if Phillips has looked at the story and though “we need some more blood here” or “what we're really missing is a lesbian”. There is just no structure to the film at all.

The other main issue I had is that the characters are so annoying and unpleasant that I never found myself rooting for them or interested in where the story would take them at all. When you mix that with performances that, with the exception of Erin Cline and Anthony Rutowicz who are involved in the only comedic moment involving an unwanted male erection, vary between wooden and unbelievable you have a combination that does not lend itself to an enjoyable viewing experience.

OVERALL SUMMARY
I read a review of this film which stated that the director had personally asked the author not to reveal any of the plot points or twists in Quite A Conundrum and I would agree wholeheartedly that this was a good idea. The fewer people who know what is going on in this film the better and I would advise giving it a wide berth. As it states quite openly in the tagline “it's a mess”.




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