As much as it pains me to say it, there have been far stupider premises than a “rock, paper, scissors” tournament. Granted, the stupider films actually are stupid, whereas The Flying Scissors is a film fully aware of its stupidity, of which it embraces to the fullest extent. It’s a mockumentary, shot in a style that is reminiscent of The Office, and while it’s far from something you should expect to take seriously it does poke fun at the current state of other sports that draw an obsession from people—everything from modern sports to how popular poker has become.
Experience the knock-down, drag-out world of competitive “Rock, Paper, Scissors” in this hilarious mockumentary that chronicles the lives and dreams of top contenders as they gear up for the national championships. Among the many hopefuls are a stay-at-home dad (Mason Pettit), a mathematical wizard who moonlights as a bathroom attendant (Keong Sim), an idealistic beauty queen (Sarah Wheeler), a fading veteran looking for one last shot at glory (Todd Susman) and a trash talking street hustler (Mike Britt).
I think what was most surprising to me about this production was just how nailed down the visual look and awkwardness was presented. I’ve seen documentary style productions go awry before and when it comes to comedy it’s a very easy thing to ruin. For The Flying Scissors it really works for the subject matter—it’s ridiculous enough already and when you combine it with the frequent mentions of the rival Coin Toss Consortium group competing for whatever ridiculous premise pops up—and is probably one of few lasting impressions it will leave on you.
Sadly the backbone of the film – the Coin Toss “rivalry” – is fairly short lived in its humor. I don’t think it would have been as much of a problem had it not been such a recurrence; it’s the type of joke that’s worth a cut-a-way glance or random mention, not something that perseveres on throughout the story. Thankfully the rest of the jokes were fairly chuckle worthy, although there were few that really stuck with you—they were all just mildly entertaining without becoming annoyances. I don’t want it to sound like the film didn’t have its moments because it certainly did…it just kind of felt like the best elements it had were those borrowed from something else and tweaked to fit the mockumentary.
I will say that The Flying Scissors definitely wasn’t as bad of a movie as I expected it to be and I’m sure it’ll live on in the home video market. It’s nothing I’d care to immediately revisit, however; it kind of sat with me the same way as Balls of Fury: ridiculous concept backed up with the occasional truly funny joke. Unlike Balls of Fury, however, The Flying Scissors’s unique mockumentary style setting definitely helped it not feel like a complete and utter waste of time.
Overall worth a Rental.
It’s been a long, long while since I’ve see trailers, interactive menus, scene selections and a Dolby Stereo Soundtrack listed as “Bonus Features” on the back of a DVD case….but kudos to The Flying Scissors to trying to bring back the days of the Warner Bros. snapper case I guess. The video is clean and clear and what you’d expect from a modern release. Audio is, as previously mentioned, a DD2.0 mix and sounds fine for what it needs to deliver.
The only real extra listed on the back of the package is a Feature Commentary with Writers. These guys clearly have a lot of passion behind what they did and I truly hope we see more from these guys (they could potentially have the same level of success as the Broken Lizard troupe…although that may or may not be a compliment depending on how you look at it). It’s an entertaining listen, although spending three hours with this film now has left me rather uninterested in watching it again anytime soon.
Overall a disc worth a Rental and nothing more.
The Flying Scissors is now available on DVD.