Film, Film Review

REVIEW: Reverse the Curse (2024) dir. David Duchovny

Now available digitally and on demand


Despite winning moments from Logan Marshall Green and Stephanie Beatriz and some profound road-trip moments, not much is at stake in Reverse the Curse, the shaggy comedy from director David Duchovny. It tries to be a father son drama, but it’s not a very compelling one until a remembrance to be about the Red Sox’ legacy. For a screenplay that tries to weave itself between both, the movie becomes of two minds about how sports fill one with purpose as a replacement for attention to one’s family. We leave the movie uninspired, with ideas that aren’t dug deeper after being brought up. It’s a movie that never hits the strides that it’s meant to; not funny enough, not poignant nor offering anything inspired to say about fandoms. Reverse The Curse becomes something maudlin, as there is no extraordinary aspect– and it all comes back to Duchovny. 

Marty (Duchovny) is battling cancer, and with the help of his son Ted (Logan Marshall Green) finds the most hope to carry on through the idea of the Red Sox one day beating their losing streak that’s been hard to bear witness to in of itself. All the while, his nurse Marianna starts a romance with Ted, who is going through an identity crisis as a struggling writer in the late ’70s (even though Duchovny doesn’t do a great job of setting up period accurate design). There’s a lack of anything grounding this trio to propel anything related to the Red Sox fascination. The movie thinks that Duchovny is interesting enough to carry the weight of his troubled past, but he is just miscast and never compelling as you’d want him to be. As a director, he does enough to get the movie where it needs to go, yet he needs a more interesting anchor than a desperate man facing the fact that all he has is baseball fandom. 

With a fandom as dedicated and exhausting as the Boston Red Sox, there is a lot of room to work with the regrets that one can have from giving themselves to a baseball team for their entire lives– that can make for great drama. Instead, Duchovny is miscast in such a way that makes for more missed potential. Even the moments of genuine connection miss the mark, such a Ted introducing Marty to weed or his struggle to be honest as a writer. Like anything else in the movie, the father/son relationship feels more underbaked compared to the Marty character himself. Even so, Duchovny proves he can’t wear this many hats– novelist, screenwriter, director, and actor– confirming one of these roles is enough for him. No matter the success of Reverse The Curse, here is just another example of how it’ll always be interesting to see what projects an actor pursues as a directing effort–this is what I have to direct— yet it ends up being pedestrian. 

Reverse the Curse
dir. David Duchovny
106 min.

Now available digitally, on demand, and in select theaters (though, oddly, none in Boston)

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