The Answer Man (2009)

The Answer Man (2009) — The word “formulaic” gets thrown around a lot in bad reviews, but some movies follow formulas well.  There is nothing startlingly original about The Answer Man but I liked it.  You could see where it was going and where it would end up, but the entertainment was in getting there.  I think it’s one of those movies you can tell from the trailer whether or not you would like it.  You could probably tell just by whether or not you like other movies of its type (misanthropic recluse is forced to deal with people, falls in love, comes out of his shell, etc.).  Jeff Daniels plays that guy that everyone has met who is basically a good guy but just acts like a dick.  Lauren Graham does that neurotic thing she seems to do in every movie, but it works okay which is probably why she does it so much.  Kat Dennings and Olivia Thirlby are in this movie and really don’t have anything to do except look hot in an indie chick way (which seems to make up most of their careers).  Lou Taylor Pucci works well in that “young guy with issues” role that’s in a lot of these movies (he also looks really different with a beard).  Anyway not a great movie and I think the ending definitely could have been a lot better (even by the meager expectations I had for the movie) but overall I enjoyed it. Sidenote: I watched this OnDemand and it was in fullscreen which always pisses me off.  There were no truly awful Pan’n’Scan moments (as there often are in mangled fullscreen versions of widescreen movies) but I always lose picture on the sides on account of not having an HDTV, I hate losing even more picture because OnDemand is wildly inconsistent with their letterboxing (IFC OnDemand films are in their original aspect ratios).

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