Man of Paper

purple thistleI’m on this Jeff Daniels kick, apparently. Do you realize that he’s been in almost everything?

Paper Man is about this guy who was probably once a paperboy, and got stuck. Even though he’s married and getting older, he’s been an adolescent for the last 30 years. But he’s not obnoxious about it. Unlike some adolescents I know.

He’s having problems writing his new book. And he has an imaginary friend, who’s a superhero.

I love it when movies break someone’s psyche into different pieces so they’re all projected onto the screen separately as different interacting characters. Like when the transporter split William Shatner into Good Kirk and Bad Kirk. Or A Beautiful Mind when it did what it did with whomever it was it did it with. (Having Ryan Reynolds as Jeff Daniels’ alter-ego is brilliant!) Or maybe even like Harvey. There’s got to be better examples than this, but I’m coming up empty.

At one point the movie almost swerves sicko pervo creepy, but somehow completely manages not to go there, while still admitting that it might have. And it’s got some foul language. Oh, and there’s a sex scene, which shows no skin, but which you’re gonna wish you never saw. Which is really one of the few reasons for showing a sex scene any more, if you think about it…

Apparently most reviewers don’t think the movie quite gels together. But for me the acting pulled me right in. There’s no reason to notice anything not working with the rest of it. (Assuming there is any such unworking thing at all.) And it doesn’t feel manipulative or fake.

So I heartily recommend this film. And I’m struck by three things:

  1. I want to see a film where Jeff Daniels and Scott Bakula play brothers.
  2. I can no longer imagine a world without Ryan Reynolds in it.
  3. I never noticed this before, but Lisa Kudrow really looks like my ex. I hope that doesn’t bode ill for Jeff Daniels’ character….

About Lyle Verbilion

I'm just wanderin' around lookin' at things. Wow.
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