Playing God is a stealth crowd-pleaser. Shot on location in Houston, it's both an entertaining dramedy about charismatic criminals plan a high-stakes con and a sly meditation on religion, spirituality, and grief. Kasulka and Benward might play twins, but they couldn't be farther apart in terms of characteristics. Both actors play their characters convincingly, with Kasulka the more compelling of the two. Her Rachel might be well-versed in cons, but she's clearly not cut out to be a career criminal. She has a ton of heart and kindness -- more than her brother, whose understanding of their family history has made him bitter and jaded. Their actual relationship with Ben, the grieving billionaire, shows the gulf of their differing philosophies on life.
McKean is able to explore both his comedic and dramatic chops as Frank, who has to develop a wise but mysterious, grandfatherly character for his interpretation of God. His take on God is both comforting and commanding, seemingly all-knowing while being emotionally opaque. Meanwhile, Frank, when he's not pretending to be God, is a lovable con who taught Rachel and Micah everything they know. McKean makes the impossible idea that God could show up wearing a three-piece suit seem somehow plausible. Overall, Playing God is a fun, entertaining film that also traverses the landscape of grief and examines how far that emotion will take us to try to find some relief, hope, and closure.