Brothers Issachar and Zabulon are jackasses. And if Jackass-style jokes and crude comedy are what you need to purge your cynicism over the last year, Sundance selection Mother Schmuckers, which follows the brothers through Brussels, might be for you. Might be.
Written and directed by Harpo and Lenny Guit, Mother Schmuckers focuses on Issachar and Zabulon, who live with their mom, Cashmere, in a lower-income section of Brussels. As the brothers walk Cashmere’s dog, January Jack, after a scene involving poo, they stop and cause mayhem at a local grocery store. They narrowly escape from the ruckus, seemingly forgetting that they ever left Jack outside the store. Cashmere, a window prostitute with a demanding boss who also plays into the story, tells her sons to find Jack or they’ll have to find somewhere new to live. As the young men search throughout the city, they meet up with peculiar acquaintances, bushy haired, gun-toting filmmaker included, who lead them into situations ranging from idiotic to disturbing to “What the hell are they thinking?”
Remember that none of it should be taken seriously. Keep that in mind, since the longer Mother Schmuckers goes on, the more it pushes the envelope. For some, those unapologetic, off-putting elements, with a few genuinely funny, well-timed jokes mixed in, could make it a classic. For most others, see something else.
Mother Schmuckers screens in French with English subtitles. It is the first Belgisch film to make it into Sundance’s Midnight section.