The Jesus Rolls may be opening in Canada on venerable John Turturro’s 63rd birthday, but there’s not much worth celebrating here.
While the concept of often-on Turturro reviving his Big Lebowski character Jesus Quintana is a good one, the sheer weirdness and poor direction from the thespian leads to a huge disappointment.
The Big Lebowski was a Jeff Bridges-John Goodman triumph, pioneered by the Coen brothers. It’s a cult classic, and The Jesus Rolls is a 21-year, long-gestating sort-of continuation that leaves a black mark on the original.
It follows famed bowler and self-perceived ladies man Quintana as he gets up to all kinds of shenanigans following his prison release. But not even Turturro, Bobby Cannavale, John Hamm, Audrey Tatou, Christopher Walken and Susan Sarandon can save this feature.
It’s off-colour, an absolute mess, and the sheer stupidity of the entire endeavour just doesn’t pay off. For all the inane, ridiculous jokes, in the end The Jesus Rolls takes itself too seriously to ever really work.
The best part of the film is Pete Davidson, who absolutely kills it as a recent, shy parolee the gang takes in. He’s hilarious during all his screen-time, and brings out the best in the others.
Turturro, who is usually such a unique and dependable force, will have to count this one as a major strike-out.