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|Directed by||Morgan Spurlock|
|Produced by||Ben Silverman
|Running time||84 min.|
In the age of manscaping, metrosexuals, and grooming products galore, what does it mean to be a man? Oscar nominee Morgan Spurlock (Super Size Me) and executive producers Will Arnett, Jason Bateman, and Ben Silverman present a documentary featuring candid interviews from Will Arnett, Jason Bateman, Paul Rudd, Zach Galifianakis, Adam Carolla, and everyday people weighing in on everything from the obsession with facial hair to body dysmorphic disorder.
Mansome takes a comedic look at the contemporary issue of male identity—expressed through the varying grooming methods different metrosexual men adopt. It features actors, comedians and everyday men and women offering their personal pros and cons of various looks and methods of grooming. Editor-in-Chief of Cosmopolitan Magazine, Kate White; cultural anthropologist, Dr. Helen Fisher; and numerous experts on male appearance and grooming weigh in with interesting facts about men in the modern era; women now share power and responsibility both at the workplace and at home, and men are now looking to express themselves through the grooming choices only men can make.
Definition of mansome
The term mansome is a neologism in popular culture. UrbanDictionary.com defines it as "an adjective that describes a man who is both manly and handsome." The documentary Mansome attempts to clarify exactly what makes a man "mansome".
To groom or not to groom
The film follows three men (in addition to Spurlock), each with completely different opinions on facial hair and the act of grooming.
- Jack Passion is viewed by some as America's greatest beardsman, and is the only American to ever win first place at the German Beard and Moustache Championships. He is also a multiple world champion in the “Natural Full Beard” category. In Mansome, Passion expresses his belief that a man's natural state is to be bearded, and therefore should be embraced. He even goes so far as to say that those who are clean-shaven are stuck in perpetual boyhood.
- In contrast, Ricky Manchanda is a fashion buyer who believes that proper grooming includes being clean-shaven and perfect. He gets his eyebrows threaded, is a proponent for moisturizing to avoid dry skin and wrinkles, and takes approximately an hour and a half to get ready in the morning.
- Shawn Daivari, a pro wrestler, portrays the extreme grooming requirements imposed by his profession.
On the review aggregate website Rotten Tomatoes, the film has a 25% "Rotten" rating, with an average rating of 4.7 out of 10. On Metacritic, the film received a metascore of 35 out of 100. The staff of the The A.V. Club named it one of the worst movies of 2012, criticizing it as "absolutely insufferable, a shabby excuse for a documentary that sadistically stretches to feature length a premise that would barely support a two-minute short."
The Chicago Sun Times reviewer Richard Roeper gave the film three stars calling it "a typically whimsical documentary". He noted that "There’s a certain late-to-the-party aspect to “Mansome,” as if Spurlock has just discovered the metrosexual trend of what, 15 years ago?".