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<Movie Details
1 March 2010 by Tim Evans

While comic book leviathans such as the Dark Knight and Iron Man hold sway in the imagination of the world's teens there is another more modest set of sci-fi heroes on the block.

Step forward the mammary cannon-brandishing Cyborg Harpies.

The Harpies, together with the Yeast Lords, are the day-glo product of the fevered imagination of awkward Utah teenager Benjamin Purvis (Angarano).

He lives with his smothering mom (Coolidge) in - for some reason - a geodesic dome and dreams of making it big time as a sci-fi writer, a sort of home-schooled Philip K Dick.

To this end he heads for the Cletus Festival where he hooks up with budding romantic novelist Tabatha (Feiffer) and wannabe film-maker Lonnie (Jiminez), who options Yeast Lords as a no-budget action movie.

He also gets to meet his hero - sci-fi legend Dr Ronald Chevalier (Clement) - a lugubrious boor at risk of being dropped by his publisher, who pinches Benjamin's ideas and passes them off as his own.

Writer-director Jared Hess maintains the deranged fervour he brought to Napoleon Dynamite and Nacho Libre in this fitfully amusing mickey-take of pulp sci-fi and the over-earnest reverence bestowed on it by small town geeks.

Angarano is fine as the mild-mannered foil but it's Flight of the Conchord's Clement who steals the show, investing the pompous Chevalier with a voice that sounds like a catatonic Alan Rickman.

Slight and occasionally clunking, it wins through by its sheer good nature and some particularly strong playing.

Get on it.