In the “American Independent” film category this year is director Alison Bagnall’s oddball dark comedy Funny Bunny, an introspective look at a peculiar love triangle with three very quirky characters. Each one struggling with inner demons, they realize that their problems are what unites them, forming the most unlikeliest of friendships. Despite the lighthearted title, nothing is particularly funny about Funny Bunny, but it does leave one reflecting on human connections and the search for happiness.
Gene (Kentucker Audley) is a childhood obesity advocate who distracts himself from his failing marriage by going door-to-door in the hopes that someone will give him the five minutes he needs to get through his well-rehearsed pitch. When he knocks on the door of a large mansion, he is surprised to be greeted by a boy who calls himself Titty (Olly Alexander). Titty lives alone in the giant house and keeps himself entertained by pretending to be an owl and obsessing over a girl he knows only from her webcam antics, which include trying on wigs, sticking out her tongue in her array of funny faces, and playing with her bunny.
Reminiscent of last year’s Felt, Funny Bunny is a good festival pick, and perfect for those with a taste for eccentric films.
The girl captures Titty’s attention to the degree that he even goes so far as to donate money for her bunny’s “medical bills”. Gene relates to the desperation in Titty’s face as he, himself, is dealing with heartache, and decides to help Titty meet the girl in person. When Titty and Gene finally meet Ginger (Joslyn Jensen) she doesn’t seem to be as “together” as he imagined from her online persona. Ginger is obviously just as lost as the two of them. A self-proclaimed staunch, animal rights activist, Ginger convinces Gene and Titty to help her and her friends release pigs from a local farm. This shared experience allows the trio to foster a relationship strong enough to let their guard down and learn to trust again.
Funny Bunny does have some cool elements to the film but, unfortunately, there isn’t one characteristic that is strong enough to leave a lasting impression past its festival run. As expected, the performances from Olly Alexander and Kentucker Audley are strong and likeable. Joslyn Jensen does a fine job, but it isn’t until the near end of the film when she is really given a platform to display her acting abilities. It is Ginger’s total breakdown proves to be one of the best scenes of the film. Slightly reminiscent of last year’s Felt, Funny Bunny is a good festival pick, and perfect for those with a taste for eccentric films.
Funny Bunny will be released in select NY theaters on November 13th.