starring Robin Williams, Mira Sorvino, James Caviezel, Mimi Kuzyk
written and directed by Omar Naim
by Walter Chaw It's interesting to me in an esoteric way that Robin Williams consistently seeks out projects that position him as some sort of levitating guru detached from the travails of the common man, floating above the madding crowd with a beatific smile on his god's-eye mug. Think of, among the many shrinks, ex-shrinks, serial killers, and genies Williams has played, his "Wizard of Oz"-ian Dr. Know from A.I., his demented developer Sy from One Hour Photo, or his sainted Dr. Chris from What Dreams May Come. By all accounts, Williams is a nice fellow--a little manic and arrested, perhaps, but pleasant and even philanthropic. So what is it about the camera that turns him into an auto-consumptive egoist with a bizarre saviour complex, into this sad clown, velvet or otherwise, who finds humour in tragedy (so the theory goes) but lately has worked pretty hard at just being gloweringly melancholic in "psychological thrillers" long on sterile atmosphere and short on any sort of resonance? Williams has this air of feeling sorry for humanity that doesn't seem pious as much as it seems self-satisfied and superior. I'm not sure what the holy land for his crusade is, but I hope that he and Kevin Spacey conquer it soon so they can get back to not being irritating pricks with delusions of Christ.