Consider its two main characters, who react differently to “greener grass” of the other. The most typical response is from mother Lisa (Dawn Luebbe), who exhibits envy and manipulates her way to get what she wants. Her best friend Jill (Jocelyn DeBoer), on the other hand, responds by being apologetic. Take for example the opening scene on the soccer field, where Jill’s son Julian (Julian Hilliard) plays it weak-and-frail on the field for mom’s attention. Jill is holding her baby girl Madison in her arm. Lisa passive-aggressively mentions how happy she is for Jill and her baby and in return, Jill responds by offering to give baby Madison to Lisa, and Lisa gladly accepts. What? That’s wrong. Right? Yeah. Maybe.
While giving away your baby to your best friend may sound weird, this is just the start. Greener Grass then goes from scenes-to-scenes of blistering satirical strangeness. There’s a hilarious husband swap, a new source of the best water in town discovered by Jill’s husband Nick (Beck Bennett), Lisa’s literal demon-child, an expressive piano recital, a mall photo studio with only one chair, and opening the second act—Jill’s son, Julian, turns into a dog. You need to see this movie.
“It’s grounded. It’s smart. It’s downright disgusting.”
The performances are brilliant. Writers/directors/lead actors Luebbe and DeBoer have perfected their characters of Lisa and Jill. Both suffer from the same disease of jealousy, but with a shallow depth buried deep in the thick layers of superficiality. SNL’s Beck Bennet is a joy to watch as Lisa’s husband, especially when Jill gives away their baby and his son turns into a dog. The kids are just as brilliant. How can you not love when a film screws around with the heads of little children. It’s just so evil.
Greener Grass is over-the-top hilarity. It’s grounded. It’s smart. It’s downright disgusting. The reaction in my theater was hard laughter with sprinkles of disbelief. I can not recommend this film more. If you like your comedies a little too serious, then stay away, and let the cool kids have their fun.
"…opening the second act—Jill’s son, Julian, turns into a dog."