This skewering of Manhattan’s bleeding-edge art and music scene is as one-dimensional as the perpetual scowl worn by Adrian (Goldberg), an avant-garde composer who thinks “harmony was a capitalist plot to sell pianos.” His ivory-banging, bucket-kicking compositions languish in obscurity while his painter brother, Josh (Bailey), makes bank with his lobby-friendly canvases. They both vie for the attention of Madeline (Shelton), a hotshot gallery maven who uses Josh’s commercial work to fund more “daring” exhibits concocted with stuffed animals and office supplies—received with mindless adoration by the city’s art speculators.
(Untitled)’s onslaught of self-indulgent bohos and art-vs.-commerce clichs are as ersatz as their objects of scorn. Displaying even more contempt for their creations than Christopher Guest’s mockathons, director Jonathan Parker and cowriter Catherine DiNapoli never pass up a chance to snicker at straw-man stereotypes. But they offer no deeper vision of creativity’s purpose beyond their characters’ avowals of “trusting the process” of their “mind’s eye.” A Wall Street collector dweeb gets the most telling line, admitting that he pursues art because it makes him feel interesting. His values may be superficial, but that’s more than can be said for a movie that has no values whatsoever.—Kevin B. Lee
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