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Park

Plenty of comedies rely on contrivance and exaggeration, but Park is forced and flat when it should zing.

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Ten Los Angelenos -- arriving in groups of two and four, and getting all mixed up -- spend a life-changing afternoon at a secluded hillside park in writer-director Kurt Voelker's comedy. It's not a very original premise, and neither are the participants: a comically inept suicider; a philanderer, plus his wife and sexy-maid-costumed liaison; a nerd; and four office mates out for lunch. Cheri Oteri, William Baldwin, Ricki Lake and Melanie Lynskey top out the ensemble cast. Plenty of comedies rely on contrivance and exaggeration, but Voelker's work is forced and flat when it should zing. Only the lunchers have an afternoon that registers as both likely and kooky enough to be gently funny. The other episodes play out like shrills skits, clocking out well past their expiration mark. SouthSide Works

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