"Successful Alcoholics" is painfully funny

Straight from the festival circuit: A tragicomedy of drinking your life away

Published May 17, 2011 9:18PM (EDT)

Besides taking a punch or getting stitches by an old-timey doctor in the West, there are not many situations in life where it helps to be incredibly wasted. If being drunk made us smarter or more successful, then our culture's only problem with alcoholism would be that it gave people too much of a competitive advantage in the world.

This tragicomic premise is what makes the Sundance short "Successful Alcoholics" so uncomfortably funny. Lizzy Caplan ("Party Down," "Cloverfield" -- and as I personally think of her -- "The better Zooey Deschanel") and T.J. Miller (also "Cloverfield") play a couple whose severe drinking problem not only doesn’t affect their jobs ... but actually helps them. They get out of traffic tickets, go to dinner parties topless, and somehow still hold down high-paying jobs.

"What a wonderful world," you think? Not quite. "Successful Alcoholics" is now playing in its entirety over at the Huffington Post (through FunnyorDie, which has for some reason removed the video) and is worth every wincingly funny, sad moment.

By Drew Grant

Drew Grant is a staff writer for Salon. Follow her on Twitter at @videodrew.

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