Invincible Force: Lose Weight, Lose Your Mind

Directed by Daniel Schneidkraut, Invincible Force first presents itself as some YouTube video diary from a slovenly metalhead janitor in Minneapolis. The look is defiantly lo-fi, though it soon becomes obvious that the angles are professional and the action is scripted. Drawn into a 90-day Internet weight-loss scam called “the program,” Drew (Drew Ailes) attempts a radical self-makeover, alienating his girlfriend and his only pal and ignoring calls from his concerned father. Invincible Force is long and slow, immersed in dull dieting process and amusing home workouts set to bad techno music, but there’s also a creepy art-film fascination as our hero gradually morphs into Travis Bickle. “I think I’ve finally found my purpose in life,” he enthuses. But, no surprise, that purpose also begins to destroy his life as he seeks to “declare victory over my stupid, fat, faggot body.” The producers claim Invincible Force was shot in exactly 90 days, for no money, with Ailes dropping 35 pounds in real time. Leeched of much obvious drama, the project feels like a stunt that could be remade with Will Ferrell (as comedy) or Christian Bale (as tragedy). Toward the insane end of his program, Drew begins spouting aphorisms that sound like nü-metal lyrics by way of Nietzsche, his brain rotted with nutritional supplements (and some peculiar bathroom habits). Invincible Force doesn’t grant Drew much depth of character; he’s merely defined by his mania, like an anorexic without the context of family or culture.