This documentary in one tweet
Some famous comedians and some people you've never heard of talk about beards, mustaches, and body hair. #ZachGalifianakisBeardRulesThemAll
"My dad always smelled like garlic and diesel fuel. And it really smelled...really beautiful to me. His hands would just smell like that because of his job. He sold...diesel-covered garlic." - Zach Galifianakis, comedian and bearded man.
"You know who had a great beard? George Bernard Shaw." - Paul Rudd, comedian and beard enthusiast.
Mansome is the product of comedians Jason Bateman, Will Arnet, and documentarian Morgan Spurlock, who's pretty much the only documentarian that people have ever heard of besides Michael Moore. (Spurlock's the guy who did Supersize Me). OK, some people have heard of Ken Burns, too, but that's it.
The documentary is essentially an hour and a half of random people discussing male grooming habits: comedians and rock stars and barbers and professors and magazine editors and beard competitors and some guy who invented a product called "Fresh Balls." (I'll give you 423 guesses about what that product does, and the first 422 don't count).
The film is split into five parts, each named after an area of male grooming: Mustaches, Beards, The Body, The Head, and The Face, and each of these sections follows a particular person whose life is supposed to give us some insight into this particular area of male grooming. In "The Body" section, for example, we follow professional wrestler Shawn Daivari, who has to shave his entire body just about every day in order to maintain his macho wrestling persona.
Here's the part where you're supposed to think a little. Why is it that a completely shaved man is considered more macho than, say, a guy who looks like a black-haired Chia pet (which is what Daivari would look like if he didn't shave)? Good question Mansome.
And that's the only thing we ever get, is the question. Spurlock is mostly smart enough to let the funniness and weirdness of his subjects carry the movie, giving the comedians plenty of air time, even when the stuff they say doesn't necessarily correspond with the topic at hand. It moves fast and stays pretty entertaining throughout.
But unlike Supersize Me, this is a documentary that manages to have essentially no point of view. We get a few throwaway lines at the end about "evolution" and "mating" and "the triumph of biology," basically arguing that men groom themselves solely to make it easier to have sex. I'm sure this is true in some sense, but it's also ridiculously reductive and insulting. It stops short of ruining the movie because it really is just tacked on at the end, and you don't get the sense that Spurlock really believes it. Actually, you don't get the sense that Spurlock cares at all. It seems like he just wanted to do a movie about mustaches with some fun people, and that's what he did.
5 cold, frosty beers (out of 10)
The best documentaries change something about you when you watch them (so do the best movies and books and paintings, incidentally, but that's a post for another time). This is not one of the best documentaries.
Jordan Jeffers favorite beard is this one from Civil War general Ambrose Burnside. Feel free to give him electronic encouragement via the little Facebook and Twitter buttons below. It means more to him than you might think.