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August 13, 2008

Henry Poole is Here


Poole A half-hearted attempt at magical realism, "Henry Poole is Here" is the least plot-driven and emotionally inert movie of the year. Luke Wilson wrenches up painful expressions as the terminally ill Henry Poole, who returns to the Los Angeles neighborhood of his childhood to live out his dying days in an empty house. Atheist Henry doesn’t plan on the house acquiring a stucco stain that resembles the face of Jesus--complete with a right eye that sheds tears of blood--and attracts the attention of every churchgoer in the area. Henry indulges in a tentative romance with his divorcee neighbor Dawn (Radha Mitchell) who imparts a sense of hope upon his cynical perspective. "Henry Poole is Here" is not a movie, but rather a sketch for a screenplay that was never written. If ever there was a cinematic impetus to give up all hope for humanity and free expression, it is this patronizing, condescending, and vacuous waste of celluloid that looks like it was made for a hundred bucks.

Rated PG, 101 mins. (D-) (Zero Stars)



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