Brentwood [Video]

 

By Omeleto

.

.

Brent Spiner made his name as iconic android Data on “Star Trek,” but he’s retreated from public life in Hollywood. He’s been teaching acting at Cal State Fullerton, but when he’s up for an award for his work on the show that made him famous, he mulls over a comeback, though he’s reluctant to dive back in. It’s a whole new Hollywood, complete with TMZ and hashtags, and Spiner isn’t sure it’s for him.

But when his old nemesis LeVar Burton commits to the awards show, Spiner decides to jump back into Hollywood. As he makes the rounds and re-enters in the industry, he finds himself embroiled in the old feud that plagued him during the height of his fame — and it’s still bitter enough to possibly derail his re-entry into Hollywood.

Directed by Sharon Everitt and written by Karen Anderson, Jeff Cosgrove and Everitt, this spiky short comedy has a scope and ambition rare in a genre where punchline skits and sketches dominate. The storytelling is character-based, driven by its protagonist’s drive to prove himself and stake out his terrain in a hostile, competitive environment, against a long-running archenemy. Sounds serious, but when the main character is a petty, egotistical star trying to regain his past glory in an industry always looking for the shiny and new — and you throw in some musical numbers for good measure, along with Frasier actor Peri Gilpin as Spiner’s wife and a cameo by comedian Doug Benson — the result is hilarious, entertaining and a helluva lot of fun.

The film’s strength rests on a great central performance by Brent Spiner, who is playing himself. But it’s clearly a heightened portrait of a star who has seen better days and yet still demands the attention of current-day celebrity. Spiner the character is bitter, sarcastic, ego-driven and vainglorious. Spiner the actor is clearly enjoying himself as he sings, dances and preens, with a performance that’s both utterly committed to the moment’s emotion while winking at the satire of an ego that just won’t let go of past glories or grudges.

Spiner traipses from one scene and musical number to the next with a deliciously toxic combination of entitlement and bad attitude, and the rhythms of the storytelling are both amiably laidback yet constantly bubbling with sharply amusing observations. The visual style is also seemingly relaxed and casual as well, in the style of the handheld one-camera comedy that’s great at capturing small but telling moments. These moments pile up as Spiner finally confronts his nemesis — and rethink its long-running effect on his life when it bubbles over into humiliation.

The delight of “Brentwood” is watching an iconic actor poke fun at himself and the peculiarly enduring level of stardom that being on an iconic, much-beloved show and franchise confers. Though Spiner the character has tried to move on, he’s not quite where he wants to be despite all his efforts and is both hampered and seduced by his enduring fame to remain in the past. The great irony, of course, is that by lampooning himself and the grip of stardom, Spiner the actor reveals terrific range, comedic chops, and wily self-awareness — not to mention a facility as an enjoyable song-and-dance man — and it would be immense fun to follow this story of a former star finding his way in a new Hollywood. Which, after all, isn’t so different from the old Hollywood, except with more hashtags on social media and more ways to get famous than ever.

 

Transcript provided by YouTube:

00:04
[Music]
00:06
yeah no
00:07
i haven’t had an agent in years i teach
00:09
acting now at cal state fullerton
00:12
we just got back from the woke
00:13
shakespeare festival in ashland
00:15
came in first hashtag me too excuse me
00:20
no no no no no no no no i didn’t mean it
00:22
like that i mean
00:23
me too as in i came in first
00:27
with them since i’m their teacher
00:30
hashtag
00:31
me also all right so mr sparner oh here
00:34
it comes
00:35
you want me to do a comic-con no
00:37
actually i’m with the intergalactic
00:39
tribute awards on
00:41
sci-fi we’re reuniting the whole cast
00:44
yeah do you guys make up these award
00:47
shows based on who you can get
00:49
no it’s real yeah well it’s not a thing
00:51
i do
00:52
i have to be a college professor i don’t
00:54
do award shows never reality shows
00:57
certainly not game shows i don’t do
00:59
conventions i won’t do a cruise
01:02
no to vegas i would do broadway
01:05
that’s a shame because everyone is in
01:07
except you and lavar
01:09
lavar is not doing it
01:12
don’t tell me some network was so
01:14
desperate they brought his
01:16
reading with the stars
01:23
gotcha i’m sorry no i was
01:25
talking to
01:26
think of it this way you could score
01:27
major points with your wife get her a
01:29
gown at fancy heels
01:31
carrie is a podiatrist she does not wear
01:33
heels
01:34
no listen i’ll uh i’ll think about it
01:37
but
01:38
uh no offense these things are dumb
01:44
they want me back
01:47
because i’m great now i don’t have to
01:50
stay home
01:50
and masturbate they want me back because
01:54
i’m grand i’m too talented
01:57
you understand always leave them
02:00
wanting more but let’s face it i’m
02:04
kind of a that’s why they’re back
02:07
begging at my door
02:09
[Music]
02:11
and even though i teach with all of its
02:14
stigma
02:14
the one thing you can’t teach is
02:17
charisma
02:20
i got it and they can taste it
02:24
come to me baby for they love me
02:28
oh they need me they can’t live without
02:31
me they
02:32
adore me who do they want
02:36
who do they need who can they not live
02:39
without brett
02:41
what the are you doing come and
02:43
open the door
02:44
sorry honey i’m i’ve got beans in the
02:46
van i’m coming
02:48
idiot
02:52
why all the beans earthquake
02:55
tsunami rocket man hey
02:58
hope your old man put all this stuff
03:00
away will you
03:02
you’re not my real father
03:06
why’d she keep saying that to me he just
03:08
joined ancestry.com and found out that
03:11
your family owned slaves
03:13
it’s unfortunate i was trying to hide
03:15
that from him
03:17
producer called wants me to do an award
03:20
show on
03:21
sci-fi that was like hell to the hell no
03:25
really because i just heard an after
03:26
that on the radio and they used your
03:27
name
03:29
i told them i wasn’t going why
03:33
never go backwards steve harvey
03:36
plus you don’t want to go out get all
03:38
dressed up come on
03:40
you never take me anywhere
03:45
and we’re gonna keep it that way i gotta
03:48
give him a piece of my mind
03:51
i said i wasn’t going and you used my
03:53
name in all your promos
03:55
oh really our ad department must have
03:57
left that slip
03:59
yeah they slipped they slipped real bad
04:01
you’re gonna hear from my lawyers
04:03
that’s plural you screwed with the wrong
04:06
puppy lady
04:07
sayonara senorita what’s that
04:11
all right
04:15
are you still there i just hear banging
04:18
yes i’m still here look i know you’re
04:20
mad let me pitch you this
04:22
your name’s already out there we’ll give
04:24
you the sweet spot
04:25
presenting hurricane relief oh
04:28
that sounds kind of interesting
04:32
no no no no no if you did it we’d have
04:34
the whole cast we just got lavar
04:37
lavar lavar burton
04:40
i’ll do it
04:46
thanks to all of your hurricane
04:48
donations
04:50
our phone lines have been flooded with
04:52
cold
04:53
flooded flooded with calls flooded
04:57
flooded with calls right look these
05:00
m m’s have your initials on them it’s
05:03
impressive
05:05
we have some poise pads guess who’s
05:08
not using the bathroom tonight
05:12
oh look at this a jet ski what are you
05:14
gonna tow that with
05:16
your electric car oh that reminds me
05:19
please do not make a scene with lavar
05:21
tonight
05:22
what let it go what he did was
05:25
unforgivable what
05:26
it’s unforgivable not to open your evite
05:29
seven evites
05:31
i’m gonna send him an eighth you are
05:34
cordially invited to
05:35
go yourself burton okay well i’m
05:38
going to get drunk tonight
05:40
look at this i don’t even know what that
05:42
is
05:43
like somebody’s got the new darth vaper
05:45
oh
05:46
red spider you’re my favorite robot
05:49
man from the tv oh well
05:50
doug benson my favorite movie podcast
05:54
wow i introduced him to your podcast you
05:57
should come on sometime
05:58
oh well no thank you oh you don’t do
06:01
podcasts
06:02
i don’t do anything anymore i do
06:05
broadway
06:06
doug it’s time to uh meet with bernie
06:10
we’re gonna go pre-game do you guys want
06:11
to join yeah i want to pre-game
06:13
no she doesn’t uh we’re gonna go uh
06:15
check out the skyscraper of shrimp in
06:17
the green room
06:19
cool see you guys later bye don’t do the
06:22
gesture and say the code
06:24
not both they don’t neither one you’re
06:26
embarrassing honey did you hear that
06:30
i’m cool i’m cool
06:35
[Music]
06:38
mandy boone we spoke on the phone yes
06:40
yes yes of course uh you sent me the
06:42
script
06:43
you know i’ve got a lot of notes here
06:44
about that so you’re not going to be
06:46
presenting the hurricane relief segment
06:48
anymore
06:49
we’re giving that to lavar we just think
06:52
he’ll set the right tone
06:53
but i’ve got the perfect thing for you
06:55
to do it’s a spit
06:57
where you reprise your beloved android
06:59
character data
07:00
on a date with alexa the amazon echo
07:02
assistant
07:03
right also a robot you do this
07:07
lady in the spaghetti thing no no
07:10
no no no
07:10
no i don’t play data anymore of course
07:13
not not without makeup
07:15
so we’re gonna get someone in here to
07:16
powder you up no that is
07:19
unacceptable
07:22
already in character you’re amazing
07:25
thanks so much
07:31
so it’s my fault yes lavar have you
07:34
i have not you might want to check the
07:36
local library
07:37
there he is lavar the stars event hi
07:40
baby thank you so much
07:41
for the call carrie how are you so good
07:44
to see you as
07:45
always that’s enough spine
07:48
i love you man yeah well you’re
07:51
wrinkling my suit
07:52
it’s been too long it could have been
07:53
sooner listen i have great news
07:56
kevin costner just canceled and i’ve got
07:58
an opening on reading
07:59
with the stars really i’m gonna steal
08:01
you for a minute
08:02
i’m gonna smell him for a minute
08:08
check out the flamingo i bet he sleeps
08:11
standing on one leg
08:14
oh my god grant slow down you look like
08:17
you’ve never seen a shrimp before i’m
08:19
gonna eat
08:19
all of these fancy shrimps before levar
08:21
gets any other i think they’re just
08:23
costco shrimp they do look
08:36
yes i’m a doctor but i’m a podiatrist i
08:38
don’t
08:50
he’s having an anaphylactic reaction i
08:53
got your spine
09:06
oh
09:23
levar you’re a hero dude you should do
09:26
my podcast
09:28
love to on second thought
09:31
i’m available
09:47
available for what
09:51
no no he was choking he was not allergic
09:55
he was choking
09:56
holy dad that was epic well but
09:59
look at it this way
10:01
you know we had a night out uh i got 56
10:04
new followers
10:06
then we got a gift bag worth 24 000
10:09
do you know you’re gonna have to pay
10:10
taxes on all that right
10:20
this i have to sell this crap
10:25
i wonder if levar ever deals with that
10:29
maybe this grudge has gone on for too
10:32
long
10:33
i thought he ignored me turns out i had
10:36
his email wrong
10:38
maybe it’s me you know what i’m tired of
10:42
being a prick
10:43
i’m gonna turn over a new leaf i’m gonna
10:45
be a nice guy
10:47
you’re the dude in the shrimp video
10:49
that’s awesome
10:51
i am awesome the old me would hate this
10:55
viral success
10:56
but now i choose to feel hashtag blessed
11:00
sure all of this is thanks to lavar now
11:03
i feel kind of bad
11:04
for key in his car this internet fame
11:07
i’m gonna jump on it quick
11:09
i’ll be back in the game without being
11:12
such a dick as though i look like a
11:14
like jeremy pimen if it gets me on
11:17
broadway zero will be given
11:20
life is looking good and the future
11:22
looks bright
11:23
gonna let my wife finish first tonight
11:26
i’m a changed man with a new lease
11:29
online
11:31
hey don’t put your dog’s feces
11:36
in my trash can
11:37
that’s for my feces and my family’s
11:40
feces not yours
11:43
off
12:02
[Music]
12:19
you

This post was previously published on YouTube.

***

If you believe in the work we are doing here at The Good Men Project and want a deeper connection with our community, please join us as a Premium Member today.

Premium Members get to view The Good Men Project with NO ADS. Need more info? A complete list of benefits is here.


Photo credit: Screenshot from video

The post Brentwood [Video] appeared first on The Good Men Project.