Taking the notion of toilet humor literally but incapable of delivering its promised religious satire, The Catechism Cataclysm is more muddled than its tongue-twister title. Produced by Eastbound & Down masterminds David Gordon Green, Jody Hill, and Danny McBride, and starring that show’s standout weirdo Steve Little, writer/director Todd Rohal’s farce follows incompetent Father Billy (Little) as he tries to rediscover his faith through a sabbatical canoeing trip with his sister’s high school ex-boyfriend Robbie (Robert Longstreet). Along this supposedly spiritual journey, Billy drops his Bible in the can, exhibits a fondness for fried diner food, gets drunk, and meets up with two Japanese girls (dubbed Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn). Scored to periodic bursts of death metal and frequently interrupted by Billy and Robbie’s narration—tall tales that are apparently supposed to relate to biblical fables—Rohal’s story drowns in randomness and half-formed jabs at ideas about divine guidance, sin, and salvation. Little’s shtick is hardly enough to prop up even a feature as slight as this 80-minute indie, though his bizarre mentally challenged adolescent-poseur routine remains the only slight source of humor in this otherwise tepid lampoon.
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