Man of the Year is relevant, there’s no question about that. These days, comedy talk shows provide as much real news as actual news programs, and people are calling on Jon Stewart to run for office. At the same time, Diebold can’t seem to get anything right, but the outcome of major elections may rest on their ability to provide reliable voting machines.
So Man of the Year sounds like it should be great. Set Robin Williams lose with contemporary political issues, and you’re bound to have yourself a winner, wouldn’t you think?
You’d think wrong, dumbass. This movie was awful. There were plenty of funny lines and some hilarious scenes, but that doesn’t make a good movie. Barry Levinson managed to take what should have been a great film concept and shit all over it. And apparently, he can’t direct, either - there were a few scenes that felt like he let Williams just run with it, but you could tell the other actors didn’t know how to respond, and the whole thing just felt awkward.
Character development was non-existent. Hell, plot development was non-existent. It was like, “Meet Robin Williams. He’s running for president!” Inexplicably, he put in an edge-of-your-seat suspense thriller sub-story that had no business in a political comedy, which only added to a love story that was less convincing than a production Romeo and Juliet put on by fourth graders (and featured, of course, the girl from the electronic voting machine company, Delacroy).
Before I even had a chance to consider that, though, I had to get past the wildly inconsistent cinematography - during a campaign rally speech, they kept cutting to a close-up shot of the scene on an TV screen, offering a muddled image of Williams’ torso for no good reason. In another scene, he’s doing the Weekend Update on SNL (minor spoiler, deal with it), and the camera PANNED BACK AND FORTH between the actual people, and the people as seen through the monitor on the SNL studio camera. Really, was that necessary? It added nothing more than another distraction for the viewer.
Do not go see this movie. Don’t even see it at the dollar theater. Wait until it’s out on cable, and then watch something else. I can’t really complain when I get to see the movie for free, but this one was so awful that I was actually pissed when I left the theater (just ask Mace).