Living in these quarantine times can be heavy since our lives have drastically changed. With all the disturbing news reports, sometimes a laugh is in order, and the sillier, the better. You’ll find an abundance of LOL silliness with Stephen Ohl’s first feature, Useless Humans.
Brian (Josh Zuckerman) is turning thirty and looking forward to meeting up with his ride or die friends for their yearly get together at Brian’s family cabin. They’ve been friends since grade school, and this meet up should be no different. Bryan has quit his job again, and he still doesn’t have enough nerve to ask his bestie and crush Jess (Davida Williams) for a date. When she arrives with her boss/boyfriend, Zachary (Joey Kern), it adds insult to injury. An alien invasion makes things worse by crashing their cabin getaway, and the gang must overcome their weaknesses to defeat the alien threat.
There are a lot of funny moments in Useless Humans that read like a cheeky TV sitcom, especially between Zuckerman and Williams, and Ohl gets points for the incredibly diverse and funny cast. Jess and the forever booze chugging Alex played by Luke Youngblood are Black, and the squeamish Louis is South Asian played by Rushi Kota. We also have a Latinx “Tomb Raider looking woman” in Chum, a research assistant played by Edy Ganem, and a smattering of other people of color. It’s nice to see representation of the world around us, especially with a goofy, sci-fi comedy. The female characters are also really strong, and the role of Alex goes against stereotypes, with him being a Black version of the typical, overgrown frat boy who Youngblood plays with enthusiasm. It’s an attempt at flipping the script and almost works (re the police chasing a streaking Alex, which is meant to be lighthearted, but the weight of real-life takes the joy out of it), especially since a white actor would most typically play this role.
The sneaky aliens are ridiculous and pretty useless in their own right, and the plan to take down the aliens even more so, but you’ll find yourself chuckling at a fun take on millennials saving the Earth. I mean, who else can be this resourceful when they’ve grown up in an economy built to help no one? We see you, millennials, we see you.
Ohl directed a fun comedy with POC, who are long-time friends. Not revolutionary in real life, but definitely in film. So, get yourself and Alex a beer, then sit back to watch four friends bumble to save us all in Useless Humans.
Available July 14 on VOD on our favorite streaming platform!