Chris Pratt (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is a janitor. He works after-hours at a bank. He has a serious brain injury and struggles with everyday tasks. A car accident left the former high school athlete on a radically different path than the one he started on. But, Chris, has made strides. He learned to write notes to himself to remind him to shower, find the can opener and make dinner. Lewis (Jeff Daniels) is Chris' blind roommate. He brings light to Chris' lonely life. He is Chris' wing man; his Litmus test for this carefully paced life.
(Spoiler Alert: Read at Your Own Risk!)
Then, the bad guys enter, of course. When they do, it's disappointing--they are flat and predictable. They befriend Chris and flatter him. They ply him with Luvlee (Isla Fisher) (did they need to assign her a lame name?). They believe their fake friendship will make Chris comply with their plan, but he doesn't fool as they'd hoped. It's not until his goal of upwardly moving at the bank is dashed by "the man," that Chris turns. There's also, Deputy Ted (Sergio Di Zio), the bumbling cop who nightly checks in on Chris, bringing him donuts and backhanded insults.
I discussed this movie with someone who survived a car accident with resulting brain damage. She had to relearn how to brush her teeth. She had to get reacquainted with family and friends because the only person she recognized was her mother. Suddenly, the movie felt more authentic. I still have issues with the 1-D characters but the rest has more grit. The true standouts are Levitt's Pratt and Daniel's Lewis. When these two share scenes, forgot about it, they bring it to the us, the lucky viewers. The ending has a dash of clever; it's also tied together too neatly with some hard-to-believe bits and ultimately, unsatisfying.
Writer/Director: Scott Frank
Run time: 95 minutes