- Directed by Clark Johnson
- Written by Garfield Lindsay Miller, Hilary Pryor
- Starring Christopher Walken, Christina Ricci, Zach Braff, Adam Beach, Roberta Maxwell
- Classification NA; 120 mins
Christopher Walken has played some weirdos in his time, but Percy Schmeiser isn’t one of them. He’s the stoic, laconic Percy of Percy, a low-key but satisfying enough drama about a Saskatchewan farmer who takes on agrochemical giant Monsanto, the multinational that accuses him of stealing its genetically modified canola seeds.
It’s based on a true story, with Monsanto as the corporate villain and Walken’s titular curmudgeon the underdog Everyman. Moralizing and a populist bent are at work, but not out of control. Well, not until the credits roll to the sounds of Woody Guthrie’s This Land is Your Land, anyway. A little hokey.
Though Percy revolves around a lawsuit, we see more farm field than courtroom. Zach Braff blandly portrays a small-town lawyer out of his depth. To give some personality to the character, Braff uses a cane. It’s a... what do you call it? A crutch. Christina Ricci plays a peppy non-GMO activist whose motor and scheming never stop. She’s in a completely different film than the rest of the laid-back cast.
Percy is a conventional feel-good film with an autumnal vibe and a Canadiana soundtrack that features David Francey and Old Man Luedecke. Fiddles are fiddled; banjos are plucked. Though the word “glyphosate” is mentioned way too often, Percy is homespun and genetically unmodified.
Percy opens in select theatres on Oct. 9.
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