Meet the Parents | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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It's tempting to call this low-budget, independently made feature by Chicago stand-up comic Greg Glienna (who directed and cowrote the script) the ultimate worst-case-scenario comedy. Glienna plays an unassuming young man in advertising who drives from Chicago to Indiana with his fiancee (Jacqueline Cahill) to meet her folks (Dick Galloway and Carol Whelan) and sister (Mary Ruth Clarke, Glienna's cowriter). What follows is a cascade of nightmares that may not always make you laugh but will impress you with the singularity of Glienna's dark approach. Some of these nightmares work better than others--I could have done without the encounter with the fiancee's former boyfriend, and there are times when the bits about the maniacal star struck sister seem overworked--but you're still likely to be taken by the purity and relentlessness of this picture's vision (1991). (Music Box, Friday through Thursday, April 3 through 9)

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