The Chumscrubber

The Chumscrubber

(2006)
A black comedy, squaring its crosshairs on "media violence, the homogeneity of suburbia and the disintegration of the American family".

Dean (Bell), living amidst the curving cul-de-sacs of a subdivision, discovers the hanged body of his best friend Troy. But nobody really cares, especially his self-absorbed parents - a self-help author and a Better Homes & Gardens housewife.

Meanwhile a trio of neighborhood ragamuffins approach Dean to cough up Troy's stash of "feel good pills", which Troy used to sell. Following a stream of threats, the trio concocts a scheme to kidnap Dean's little brother (Culkin). Only they snatch the wrong kid, and this one's mother is too caught up in wedding preparations (with the nutso Mayor played by Fiennes) to notice he's missing.

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The Press Reviews

34% of critics recommend.
Rotten Tomatoes Score. More reviews on Rotten Tomatoes

  • In "The Chumscrubber," Dean Stiffle (Jamie Bell) walks into his friend Troy Johnson's (Josh Janowicz) room during one of his mother's parties to find that he's hanged himself. The aggressively jovial Mrs. Johnson (Glenn Close) hasn't discovered the body, and Dean doesn't see the point in alerting her, seeing as she's busy mingling. Later, Dean tells his parents he kept it to himself because he didn't think "you guys would care." His dad jots down some notes and offers him a pill... Full Review

  • An appallingly clumsy and stupid take on drugs, kidnapping and suicide in suburbia. Director Arie Posin drags down a name cast (Glenn Close, Ralph Fiennes, Allison Janney, Jamie Bell) who will need to scrub their reps clean of this tripe... Full Review

  • An insufferable, self-conscious cult movie, "The Chumscrubber" smugly heaps on half-baked ideas about media violence, the homogeneity of suburbia and the disintegration of the American family. Director Arie Posin and scribe Zac Stanford stick their toes into the satirical waters occupied by "American Beauty" and "Donnie Darko" in their debut feature, a shrill, over-the-top farce like last year's "Stepford Wives" remake. Webster's defines "chum" as "animal or vegetable matter thrown overboard to attract fish" -- viewers may want to do the same with this planned summer release from DreamWorks' fittingly named specialty division, Fish (working in tandem with Newmarket) as well... Full Review