The other major criticism is similar, it is that the film should be either about sly carsalesman in a competition for their jobs or it should be about a hostage crisis and not spend the entire exposition setting us up for a car sales competition. Again, that the movie should pick what it is about more clearly, is the critique. This criticism seems thoroughly not to feel with the movie but impose expectations of formula unfairly on a surprising movie. The movie sets up the audience to empathize with the screwed up priorities of its screwed up protagonist (Robin Williams) only to put those priorities and all of his life in perspective with the insurgance of Tim Robbins' character into the situation.
It is a great movie about rediscovering what is important when there is a gun to one's head. AND a really funny comedy, so it is a movie that works both dramatically and comedically and genuinely turns me from a little sleazed by the beginning to feeling a little warm and gooey inside by the end. If only more films moved in that direction, daring to break with formula and introduce genuine drama while still managing to uplift the spirit by the end in a way that feels genuine, maybe we'd have more than one or two comedies worth watching every year.
Plus, Tim Robbins and Robin Williams are perfect in their roles and there's always the pre-nanny Fran Drescher to get a kick out of.
A movie that is definitely worthwile and deserving of the DVD release that it likely will be unthinkingly and unjustly denied.
The acting is really pretty good -- how can it not be with Robin Williams, Tim Robbins and Fran Drescher? But the audience never knows whether to laugh or cry.
Five stars for creativity and taking a big chance. Unfortunately it doesn't work.