Director: Jonas Pate
Starring: Kevin Spacey, Mark Webber, Robin Williams, Keke Palmer, Saffron Burrows, Jack Huston, Pell James, Robert Loggia, Dallas Roberts, Jesse Plemons
Jonas Pate steps out of TV land, where he has spent the last decade in various behind the camera positions to try his hand at the big screen and despite the help from a talented cast that includes the award-laden duo of Kevin Spacey and Robin Williams, as well as the promising young actress Keke Palmer (Akeelah and The Bee), Pate is unable to lift the film above the ponderous overfilled script. There are way too many characters here, and the result is a lack of real character interaction and depth that would allow the stars to work their magic.
Kevin Spacey is Henry Carter, a prominent psychiatrist to the stars with a best selling self help book. Life should be great, but the recent suicide of his wife has led him to a drug problem and serious self-doubt. This ties in with the stories of an aging star fighting philandering tendencies (Williams), a Hollywood power agent along with his pathological germ fear and his sweet pregnant assistant. There is also a teen struggling with loss (Keke Palmer), an aspiring screenwriter, a beautiful aging actress. Robert Loggia plays Carter’s father, and Jesse Plemons plays his drug dealer who also serves as a shoulder to lean on. I guess writer Thomas Moffett didn’t think he had quite enough characters yet. I would like to tell you more about the seemingly endless sub-plots here, but I have used all my space just giving most of the characters. I might have missed a couple, but you get the idea.
If you imagine taking Ordinary People and mashing it up with American Beauty and Crash you will have some idea of what to expect here. The offspring here though, is not a best picture winner but rather a muddled mass of wasted potential and missed opportunity. In the end, there is a mediocre drama that will suffice for Friday night viewing for genre fans, but no more than that.
Director: Jonas Pate