Directed and written by Dito Montiel, The Clapper is 2018 comedy film that is a lost gem to come out of that year. It features an all-star cast, including Alan Thicke in his final movie role before he passed away in 2016.
Eddie Krumble (Ed Helms) is a poor actor in Hollywood who frequently appears as a fake audience member in infomercials. He gets jobs through a producer named Louise (Leah Remini) along with his best friend Chris (Tracy Morgan). He has a crush on local gas station attendant Judy (Amanda Seyfried) and frequently visits her before finally working the courage to ask out on a lunch date.
That is ruined when daytime talk show host Jason Stillerman (Russell Peters) does a segment on infomercials and notices Eddie’s frequency in them. Dubbing Eddie “The Clapper,” he embarks on a campaign to find him. Eddie is soon hounded as his notoriety starts to affect his life. His frustration grows as he finds himself not making any money of his newfound fame and as it starts to interrupt his relationship with Judy.
Ed Helms drives the movie in an excellent direction. While we’re used to seeing his crazy antics on The Office, his portrayal of the character Eddie is more of an everyman who is caught in a bizarre circumstance. The other actors, especially Remini, were all well-casted and turned out great performances. I do want to note Adam Levine, who essentially played himself, but as a Stillerman’s producer, not a platinum record-making singer.
While the film is somewhat billed as a comedy, and it has plenty of laughs, it has very serious moments of reflection that may surprise anyone who has watched the trailer or promos for it. Some audience members may find this disappointing if they expecting a Tracy Morgan and Ed Helms crazy ride through the whole thing.
One of the things I appreciated about the film is its commentary on instant fame. Eddie Krumble is not interested in being famous, he is just trying to get by in life and be with the woman he loves. His life becomes up-ended because of his fame and at first, he rejects it, but then starts to use it as to his advantage, but incidentally hurts people in the process. It is a cycle we see over and over again from social media influencers to YouTube stars and even mainline celebrities today. It makes you wonder if fame is even the answer to happiness.
Bottom line, this is a funny, but at times serious look at fame and how it can negatively affect your life. It is well-acted, well-told, and while imperfect, it is definitely a hidden gem to come out on streaming.
FAVORITE QUOTE: If I wasn’t such an idiot, I would feel like a moron hanging out with you people.
PARENTAL CONCERNS: Strong foul language
Check out the trailer below:
What do you think? Let me know in the comments below. While you are at it, check out my book reviews of The Architects Of Betrayal by Jack Buckby and One Flew Through the Dragon Heart by CS Johnson. Don’t forget to like, share, and subscribe for more posts like this one.