Have you ever watched a movie and compared it to shuffling a stack of playing cards? Well that's probably the best way to describe the new movie from director Gore Verbinski (Pirates of the Caribbean).
Nicolas Cage stars as Dave Spritz, a well-paid local weather man who is having a lot of personal problems. Spritz has split from his estranged wife (Hope Davis) and their two kids. His life just never seems to make any sense and it always seems to reach a pinnacle when he is hit in the face with some sort of fast food item from an irate pedestrian.
Spritz is trying to also find a way to reach out to his kids, but they seem to be slipping through his fingers. On top of his declining life, Spritz's father (Michael Caine) is also dying of cancer.
Before he loses his father forever, Spritz wants to show his dad that he can be a good father, have a good life, and make him proud. You know, kind of what we all want at some point.
What can Spritz do to stop his family from imploding? How can he save his life and find himself in the process? Trust me; Spritz has an idea or two.
On paper, The Weather Man looks like a great film. It is teaming with supporting talent, has a powerful up and coming director, and it allows Cage to do what he does best. Then why does it feel so odd?
Well, there seems to be two entities in this film. One is a story about a lonely, depressed man reaching out to save his life. The other is this twisted, sexually-confusing sub-culture that seems to creep in at the oddest places.
I really enjoyed the first entity and I found that Cage was brilliant, even if we have seen him do this kind of persona in about 5 or 6 other films. I also was a great admirer of Cage's facial expressions in this film.
My favorite scene in the film is towards the end, when Cage and his dad sit in the car and listen to Bob Seger's "Like a Rock". It's touching, poignant, and everything this film should have been. It's everything I wanted from this film.
The second entity was alarming, disjointed, annoying, and so inappropriate – especially when a lot of its time was spent in the sub-plots involving Cage's children.
Maybe I am not explaining this monster within this movie very well. Let me try, without giving away too much of the subplots.
Imagine a situation where you are sitting in a psychiatrist's office. The couch is comfy and you are relaxed. You begin telling this professional about some of the problems in your life. He is very interested and you seem to be benefiting from the session. Then out of nowhere, an angry, naked midget comes out from behind the doctor's desk and begins to dance as he screams at the top of his lungs the rudest language you can possibly imagine. Now think how this would affect you as you continue to tell your deepest problems to the doctor. That is the feeling that I felt while I watched The Weather Man.
To say that I was disappointed with this film is an understatement. I just wish that Cage would have shot that dancing naked midget with his bow. (2 out of 5) So Says the Soothsayer.