Movie Reviews: Man Of The Year
Critics are generally expressing pained disappointment with Barry Levinson's Man of the Year, which stars Robin Williams as a TV comic who's elected president, and Christopher Walken, Lewis Black, Laura Linney and Jeff Goldblum in supporting roles. "When great premises go wrong, the result is movies like Man of the Year," Claudia Puig comments in USA Today. Eleanor Ringel Gillespie in the Atlanta Journal says it's "the sort of [movie] you almost feel sorry for." Gary Thompson in the Philadelphia Daily News remarks that the filmmakers seemed strangely determined "to move political commentary to the back row while bringing to the fore a dull, conventional thriller about electronic voting." Jack Mathews in the New York Daily News asks, "Where is the Levinson who directed the sharply biting 1997 political satire Wag the Dog?" Kate Taylor in the Toronto Globe & Mail dismisses it as a "moderately funny little movie that isn't pointed enough to successfully skewer its political targets." A.O. Scott in the New York Times observes that the film arrives just prior to election day. "Man of the Year wants to plant itself in the noise and fury of the present, but without raising any hackles," Scott comments. And Joe Morgenstern in the Wall Street Journal brands the film "a mess -- sometimes an entertaining mess, but mostly a movie that makes a perfunctory mockery of the mockery currently passing for political discourse."