Office space

Monica LaBelle

Haiku Tunnel

Directed by Josh & Jacob Kornbluth

(Josh Kornbluth, Warren Keith, Amy Resnick, Sarah Overman)

Rated: R

 

 

Haiku Tunnel is a high school forensics monologue gone movie-sized – complete with an over-dramatized nerdy kid.

It drowns in its own glorification of the minutia of office life. It’s as if the script is based on a comedy routine. Probably because the script is based on a one-man show written by Josh Kornbluth and filmified with the help of his brother Jacob, Kornbluth.

Josh Kornbluth plays Josh Kornbluth, an office temp who suddenly lands a “perm” position at a law firm called S&M. Schuyler & Mitchell, that is.

His office tasks are highlighted with tedious soliloquies on the best pens to use and the burden of transcribing and sending out seventeen letters – a task where procrastination helps him land in the bed of an attractive young corporate schmoe.

Films that portray the corporate set as devoid of emotion or creativity seem to never be in short order, and the Kornbluths rely on the hacked-over idea that creative types are just too manic and special to be placed in the world created by their shallow, materially secure supervisors. This idea is made clear through obvious characterizations. On the secretaries’ side there is the perky blonde and prissy gay man and on the lawyers’ side there is the stiff, business-focused lawyer.

“You know what your problem is? I think you just have an artistic temperament,” lawyer Bob says to Josh when Josh tries to quit after the pressure of mailing seventeen letters becomes unbearable.

And while Haiku Tunnel is an intriguing title (What? You mean this isn’t a Japanese film with subtitles?) the segment of the movie that inspired the title could have been sliced out of the movie without harm.

Orientations, copy machine frustrations and social isolations are explored thoroughly enough to make you count down the minutes until that magic hour when you can leave your theater seat like you’re leaving your office chair. See this movie only if you revel in the dullness of desk life.

-Monica LaBelle

Haiku Tunnel opens today at the Lagoon Cinema.