Movies like this are few and far between. Some would be thankful for that. Not me. I love this kind of thing. Any movie that features characters just like the ones I dodge on the streets on a daily basis is going to get high marks in my book. “Townies” is that film, and the people whose lives it focuses on exist in every city of note around the world.
The setting is Schlarb, Ohio. Townies seem to be everywhere. Many live in boarding houses, while others scrounge in dumpsters for buried treasures. Dickie (Toby Radloff — Genuine Nerd) is one of those dumpster divers, and one day he comes across the corpse of a pretty woman (not Julia Roberts). Of course, Dickie never had a girlfriend before. Now he does. You see, Cupid can strike anywhere.
Other townies include Caduceus (Shane Koltnow), who has an incredibly eerie fight scene that will haunt you for days; Crazy Connie (Michelle Sibits); and The Clapper (played by comic book artist P. Craig Russell). This black and white movie follows these folks around as they are attacked by juvenile delinquents, arrested, sexually assaulted and so on. That’s not to say some don’t get to engage in a little revenge, but I’m not about to give away plot secrets in a movie where anything can happen.
I’d also be remiss if I didn’t mention the extras on this DVD. Seeing as Tempe Entertainment put it out, you’d expect it to be jam packed with bonus material like all its other DVD releases. It is, but this one puts its other DVDs to shame. The bonus material on here, including Toby Radloff’s web segments and the hilarious feature commentary (which makes the movie a little less creepy and far more sympathetic), is more entertaining than what Tempe has done before.
Don’t bypass “Townies.” Sure, it may be about the people you go out of your way to avoid while walking to your favorite bagel place, but these are the folks who make life exciting, and it’s about time a film actually focused on these genetic mishaps. They are real people, and you shouldn’t piss them off. If you do, Caduceus will cleanse you, and nobody wants that. Trust me on that one.