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Terri (Blu-ray Review)

9 Oct, 2011 By: Ashley Ratcliff

Street 10/11/11
Box Office $0.7 million
$22.98 DVD, $29.99 Blu-ray
Rated ‘R’ for sexual content, language and some drug and alcohol use — all involving teens.
Stars John C. Reilly, Creed Bratton, Jacob Wysocki.

High school reject Terri Thompson (Jacob Wysocki) lives such a sad existence that it’s painful to watch. He’s severely overweight, has no friends, goes to school in his pajamas and has no desire to learn. Terri’s parents aren’t in his life (for reasons that never are fully disclosed) and he must care for his sickly Uncle James, played by a versatile Creed Bratton of “The Office.”

When the highlight of Terri’s day becomes setting cheddar-laced mouse traps outdoors and fervently feeding the dead rodents to the birds, you may be ready to write him off, as I was. (Clearly, that’s not normal behavior.)

Thankfully, the school principal, Mr. Fitzgerald (John C. Reilly), sees something in the misguided pupil and shows him the extra attention he needs — even if that means having one-on-one meetings reserved only for the school’s most inept. It’s nice to see Reilly in a more sober role, and he’s endearing as a guy who’s trying to figure it out, too. At one point he tells Terri, “Life’s a mess, dude. But we’re all just doing the best we can.”

Terri finds much-needed companionship in Mr. Fitzgerald and fellow outcast Chad (Bridger Zadina), a foul-mouthed kid with a litany of issues of his own. Though nothing overly dramatic or particularly surprising happens in the slow-paced Terri, it’s the dynamic between these three that produces a warmness that resonates.

Terri is light on special features, but those included matter. “A Look Inside Terri” showcases Azazel Jacobs as an invested director, while painting a picture of the relaxed on-set atmosphere. Tim Heidecker (“Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!”) plays volatile gym teacher Mr. Flemisch, and his misdirected anger is on display in a funny deleted scene. The other deleted scenes bring more depth to Terri, Chad and Mr. Fitzgerald.

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