Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

Arts and Entertainment

LAist Movie Review: Kenny

Stories like these are only possible with your help!
Your donation today keeps LAist independent, ready to meet the needs of our city, and paywall free. Thank you for your partnership, we can't do this without you.


Those aren't firehoses that are being handled in Kenny.

Kenny Smyth’s life is mired in crap. Literally. He’s a port-o-pottie distributor/sales rep with a passion for his job, but understands that the people he meets don’t necessarily share in the excitement of excrement. And poop is at the heart of the new Australian film Kenny.

As played by everyman Shane Jacobson (who serves as the film's co-writer along with his brother Clayton, who directed the film), Kenny's a good guy who tries to keep a low-profile about work. He introduces himself as a “plumber” to spare other people the awkwardness when he reveals what he really does. “I don’t know what all the fuss is about,” he explains matter-of-frankly. “It’s about 80% water…And we’ve got chemicals to take care of the other 20%.”

Support for LAist comes from

Because the film is shot as a mockumentary, we follow Kenny as he sets up port-o-potties throughout the Melbourne area at festivals, concerts and other miscellaneous events. Jacobson is spot-on serious, which makes it even that much funnier when Kenny, for example, recommends that the management of an Indian food festival ups the toilet count because of all the spicy foods being served.

Life outside of Spashdown (the company he works for) isn't all rosy. He has to deal with family issues: a father who thinks he's not living up to his potential; an ex-wife who's a pain in his behind; an uptight brother who just doesn't get Kenny or his father. All the while, he's just trying to be a good dad to his own son.

Kenny is one of those small, feel-good films where you root for the underdog. You just can't help hoping that things work out for this bloke - especially since one of the highlights of his life is a trip to a "plumbing" convention in Nashville. (He calls it Poo HQ with all affection.)

And while Kenny's not as outrageously funny as other Outback imports like Strictly Ballroom or Muriel's Wedding, it sure as hell doesn't stink.

Kenny has at least a week's run at the following three theatres: Laemmle's One Colorado, Laemmle's Santa Monica and Regency South Coast Village in Santa Ana/Costa Mesa.