Movie: "The Go-Getter" is a Story You’ve Seen Before
December 10, 2012
Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Eight months after his mother dies of cancer, teenager Mercer (Lou Taylor Pucci, "Thumbsucker") steals a car from a local carwash and sets out to find his long lost, half-brother Arlen (Jsu Garcia, "We Were Soldiers"), who is eighteen years older and residing in a different state, to tell him of their mother’s passing in person. As his journey begins, a cellphone sitting on the dashboard of the car begins to ring and, upon answering, Mercer is introduced to the stolen cars owner, Kate (Zooey Deschanel, "The New Girl"). Throughout his ride, Mercer develops a close relationship with Kate who, in exchange for not calling the cops on her stolen car, asks him to call her periodically to let her know about his adventure.
While traveling, Mercer meets up with an old middle school friend Joely (Jena Malone, "Saved"), as well as learns many unsavory details about his brother, who seems to not stay in one place for too long. He is forced to follow any lead he can in hopes that it will get him that much closer to finding his estranged sibling. Everything eventually comes to a head with Mercer meeting Kate face to face and then reuniting with Arlen; confessions all the way around are made.
The Go-Getter is an independent film made in 2007 with several better known “indie” actors. The actors all do an admirable job with the material, and the development of the relationship between Pucci’s Mercer and Deschanel’s Kate almost solely over the telephone is enjoyable to behold, but the feeling of having watched this plotline and these themes a million times before in other films detracts from the experience. The camera work is intentionally shaky at times, but as it only makes sense to use it for party scenes, the trick wears thin quickly. The pacing is appropriate, albeit quick, and as the characters do not stay in one place for too long the scenery changes are welcome and interesting, constantly keeping the audience from getting completely bored.
Unfortunately, the major problem the film has is that the storyline is so unoriginal and predictable. As each one of the characters is introduced, their relationship to Pucci’s Mercer, and their subsequent plotline and character development, immediately becomes apparent and there is no need to think beyond the obvious. The short runtime makes "The Go-Getter" an easy viewing experience, but do not expect to see anything groundbreaking.
"The Go-Getter" is rated R for language, some sexual content and drug use and runs 93 minutes. It is available on Netflix or for purchase.