There are a lot of strange hobbies out there. Sometimes, many people share those strange hobbies and organize huge competitions to see who’s the best. One such hobby is making sculptures out of sticks of butter, and Bob Pickler, played by Ty Burrell, is the most successful and famous butter artist in Iowa, where our movie takes place. When he decides to judge the competition instead of compete, his overbearing wife Laura, played by Jennifer Garner, decides to give it a shot. Also entering in the local competition is Destiny, an 11 year old girl who has just found a decent set of foster parents and who is really talented, and Brooke Swinkowski, played by Olivia Wilde. Brooke is a stripper who Bob Pickler has relations with and is now on a revenge mission to get the money the Pickler’s owe her.
The casting of nearly every role in Butter is just awesome. Who better to play the quirky, pretty lame father of a family than the award winning actor of a similar role in Modern Family Ty Burrell? Garner is a perfect fit for an uptight, controlling wife, and Wilde is hot enough and crazy enough to be a spiteful stripper/hooker. Hugh Jackman makes an appearance as a hotshot owner of a car dealership, and Rob Corddry is good as the good guy/funny guy father of Destiny, played by Yara Shahidi in her first big role, who is just adorable. Oh, and then there is Kristen Schaal playing the awkward, strange butter sculpting fanatic.
Writer Jason Micallef brings his first story to the screen with relatively new director Jim Field Smith. The story is a simple one, not meaning to surprise or confuse, only to be fun and funny. There are characters truly good, truly bad, and truly ridiculous. I don’t know about you, but I think it’s fun to hate characters, and fun to laugh at them, and there is plenty of both.
2/4 – A quaint satire/comedy about the wonderful world of butter sculpting. Strong casting is the high point of this funny but ultimately average film.