Wonder Boys (2000)

<strong class="MovieTitle">Wonder Boys</strong> (2000)

(On VHS, November 2001) While we’re used to see Michael Douglas in antiseptic professional roles (Wall Street, Traffic, etc…), he’s equally convincing here as a rumpled-up English professor caught in a web of adultery, lies and creative rut. He looks like an unshaven hound-dog and mostly acts like it too. Fortunately, he proves more than adequate to carry the movie on his shoulders. Toby Maguire’s usual drowsy acting style also works well here, which is more a reflection on how well he picks his roles to suit his style rather than any stretching of his abilities. The rest of the supporting cast is one of the best in recent memory. Blackly funny, cynical and almost comforting in the way it plays on the clichés about Writers and Academics, Wonder Boys is a lot of fun. (Though it’ll work much better on said writing/academia audiences) As an added bonus, it’s well-written, occasionally clever and far from being stupid. Who could ask for more in a movie?

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