A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Violence & Scariness
Very intense peril.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
References to adultery, nudity.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this is an intensely scary thriller with severe peril (though not graphic), nudity, and sexual references and situations, including adultery and child molestation. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Writer/director Mark Romanek handles mood and tone well, but the film ends up being too much about images and surfaces, more artificial itself than the artificiality it attempts to depict. It's not about anything real. It's about what Romanek imagines middle America to be like. Romanek shows Sy and his small corner of the cavernous SaveMart in the blandest of neutral colors with cool undertones. The Yorkins, in person and in the photos meticulously color-balanced by Sy, are shown in warm, bright, vivid colors, while everything about Sy is beige, even his hair.
The attraction of the material for Williams is obvious, too. The utterly repressed character is the other end of the scale from his own personality and his best-known performances. But inside every comedian is a lot of hostility, and Williams uses his well to create both pathos and menace. Overall, the movie's logical lapses, odd conclusion, and too-easy explanation keep it from being completely successful. Like Sy, Romanek seems to have lost the boundaries between the observer and the image.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.