The Battle of Shaker Heights

I've seen only one episode of Project Greenlight, the HBO reality show that tracked the production of this feature, but I have a feeling it was the relevant one: after the movie scored poorly at a test screening, Miramax vice president Rick Schwartz bullied directors Efram Potelle and Kyle Rankin into playing up the comedic elements and soft-pedaling the family drama. The resulting cut is a botch, with four vestigial scenes blocking out a conflict between a high school military buff (Shia LeBoeuf) and his ex-junkie father (William Sadler), and the remainder tracing the snarky kid's romantic pursuit of a friend's older sister (Amy Smart). 85 min.

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