Visioneers (Director: Jared Drake): George Washington Winstonhammerman (Zach Galafianakis) works as a Level Three Tunt for the Jeffers Corporation, “the largest and friendliest and most profitable corporation in the history of mankind.” But he and his coworkers are miserable, mostly due to the company’s philosophy of destroying every trace of individuality in its employees. This unhappiness seems to have gripped the nation, which is experiencing an epidemic of spontaneous human explosions. George is worried that he might be next, especially since he keeps dreaming that he’s actually his famous ancestor, General George Washington.
Although work seems to take up much of George’s mindshare, he has a huge house, a beautiful wife (the lovely Judy Greer) and a son. But he doesn’t seem to actually do anything with his life. His wife is addicted to an Oprah-like television show, his son never leaves his room, and he pursues his hobbies listlessly and alone. And, oh yeah, he’s impotent.
Visioneers strides pretty confidently into Brazil territory, even with its tiny budget, with the same farcical level of satire about corporate control. It mostly succeeds on this level, with several running gags that kept me laughing (the Jeffers’ one-finger greeting among them). And Galafianakis is excellent, showing flashes of passion even though he’s basically playing depressed for the whole film. But like the “happy ending” version of Brazil, the film fails when it suggests that some form of romantic love is the solution to all George’s problems. His pursuit of ex-coworker Charisma (Mia Maestro) seems meaningless when the Jeffers Corporation seems to control the entire society, including the government. Instead of pursuing his indictment of the corporate agenda to its logical end, first-time director Drake seems to cop out with a pat ending. Sex with a pretty girl isn’t going to change the world after all.