This film is perplexing in that it provides an excellent vehicle for Sam Rockwell's acting talent and as such gives you quite a cinematic ride, but the story itself is, in my view, vapid and a bit silly, and purely out of an entertainment factory without any sense of real life, and not enough charm to compensate. Of course it trades on this unreality in the sense that it is set in a totally media-oriented world, and Rockwell is superbly charismatic as the games show host. Some of the material on these shows is very funny. But the pitch of the film is not very likeable. I have to admit I am not a film noir fan and that villains - or ambiguous ones - hold very little appeal for me. I don't even get Orson Welles on the Ferris wheel, so I'm not likely to be taken with any other cinema creations of the same ilk. What I did enjoy was Rockwell in all his zany brilliance, and as always he shows us his rear end and even gets to put something up it - only for the purposes of smuggling, I hasten to add, but it was nonetheless a new cheeky high from an actor who has never been afraid to put himself on the line or use his sense of being completely and playfully at ease with his body - see Choke for proof of this - to add to the film. I'm still waiting to see the film that will really use his comic skill, daring, and heart to the best possible effect - as it is I already think he has been seriously overlooked, but the films aren't ever quite as good as he is.