Adventures of a Happy Homeless Man (2016) – By Philip Smolen


Bobo the Hobo (a hilarious Felino Dolloso) is a homeless man who’s been barely getting by in life. Found by a documentary film crew, Bobo decides to show them that he’s all about trying new things. So he goes to audition as a guitarist for a punk rock band even though he can’t play a single power chord. Intimidated by the camera, the leader of the punk rock band (Demitra Alexandria) tells Bobo that he needs to take lessons before he can join the band. So Bobo goes off and tries to take lessons from another musician that he knows. When that doesn’t work, Bobo then decides to stop a drug dealer (Rico Banderas) from selling cocaine, only to find that the man is actually selling flour to his customers. Bobo continues to fail at everything he attempts while telling the documentary crew about his lovely ex-wife (Aleksandra Voronina) who threw him out. It quickly becomes apparent to the crew that all Bobo really wants is to get back together with her. But can Bobo’s new found documentary fame help him get back the woman he loves?

“Adventures of a Happy Homeless Man” is a full-length mockumentary from writer/director Dicky Tanuwidjaya and it’s a witty and sarcastic look at how the camera stops people from being themselves. Bobo only really wants his wife back, but once the camera starts filming him, he puts up a false front and convinces the crew that he’s good at everything he does. It isn’t until much later that he tells the camera crew how he really feels. Meanwhile, everyone else he meets is captivated by being on camera. They want to appear likeable, so they go along with Bobo and put up with his shenanigans, even though he becomes a major drag on their endeavors.

There are some very funny scenes here. One of the best is when Bobo goes to an open movie audition and doesn’t realize that the character he’s trying out for is gay. Bobo’s reaction to the news that he will have to kiss another man is priceless. Another great scene is when Bobo decides to be an investigative reporter and interviews a local politician and constantly puts words in the man’s mouth.

The only issue I had with the film is that some of the scenes go on too long which diffuses their comedic impact. And it also takes too long for Bobo to finally realize what he really wants in life. But these weaknesses don’t wreck the film’s charm or its originality. “Adventures of a Happy Homeless Man” is a sparkling and joyful look at a loveable loser and his search for completeness. It’s a clever addition to the mockumentary movie genre.

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