Leo (George Johnson) is a drug addict who’s in need of a fix and is willing to do anything to get it. He’s been through the roughest parts of addiction and come out the other end of it looking so much worse for it and this is where the audience finds him now.
Desperate to find his next high and with only a vague recollection of where he can get it, Leo enlists his impressionable cousin, Louis (Samuel Wyatt) to help him to convince somebody to give him what he needs. However, the price may be too high for some people, but to Leo who only sees his own pleasure as the end goal – he’ll do anything.
Lemonheads is a comedy drama written and directed by Ryder and Dawson Doupé and Todd Tapper. In the same vein (pun intended) as such stoner comedies as The Big Lebowski and Trainspotting, Lemonheads has the feeling of the latter, but without the style of the former – but what does?
Instead, Johnson gives the audience his best performance as a likeable single-minded stoner and his determined influence over the people around him. The problem is that although this works for the majority of the movie and there are some funny lines with an interesting cast filled with unique and eccentric characters, by the movie’s final act the tone changes dramatically.
This leaves Johnson trying to do his best with the way he’s decided to portray the character, but makes him feel like he’s in another movie altogether.
Admittedly though, for the writer/directors to be so young and to come out the other end with something as tightly scripted, with an interesting cast of characters, it shows that they may have a future.
There are directors twice their age with more movies under their belt that still can’t seem to get it right, and yet the trio may have found a perfect team in their debut feature. As a first try, Lemonheads is far more accomplished than anyone may have expected, and although there are certainly lessons to be learned, the young filmmakers are sure to have a future.
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