THE WEATHER MAN
Morose, With A Strong Chance of Boring
Release Date: October 28, 2005
Starring: Nicolas Cage, Michael Caine,
Hope Davis, Gemmenne de la
Pena, Nicholas Hoult, and Gil
Rating: R for strong language and
Runtime: 101 minutes
Distributor: Paramount Pictures
Director: Gore Verbinski
Executive Producer: David Alper and William S.
Producer: Todd Black, Jason Blumenthal
and Steve Tisch
Writer: Steve Conrad
Address Comments To:Brad Grey, Chairman/CEO
Gail Berman, President
Motion Picture Group
5555 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90038-3197
Phone: (323) 956-5000
Separated from his wife, alienated by his children and struggling to gain his father’s acceptance, David Spritz sees one chance to knuckle down and pull all the pieces of his life together: a lucrative television job in New York working for the national morning broadcast "Hello America with Bryant Gumbel."
The film itself lacks almost everything. First, the writing is bad. Steve Conrad’s script is predictable, one-dimensional and boring. Plus, the overly abundant use of the "f" word shows a total lack of creativity and originality on the scribe’s part. It’s also obvious that the writer can’t decide if the film should be a drama or a comedy. There is nothing particularly dramatic, and there is certainly nothing funny. And, trying to tie together a parallel between the weather man’s archery hobby and hitting the mark with his family is the most blatant of symbolism – and the symbolism doesn’t even hit the mark; rather, it hits too on-the-nose.
The director, Gore Verbinski, must have given each performer a general note: Say everything very slowly and with absolutely no life in it. His pacing kills any momentum that may be building; and, the pathos with which each actor was directed to lace their performance makes the entire movie gloomy and pathetic.
Nicolas Cage seems half-asleep for the entire film. There is nothing about his character that even makes the audience want to “root” for the guy. Michael Caine looks like he doesn’t even want to be in this movie. The weather man’s children, played by Nicholas Hoult and Gemmenne de la Peña, seem to have taken the same acting class that Nicolas Cage took for the film. The only performance that brings any glimmer to the film is Hope Davis as the weather man’s estranged wife. She brings some dimension and realism to her character.
A major philosophical problem with the movie is the ending. (SPOILER WARNING) At the end of the film, the weather man tells his father that he has gotten the job in New York and that his salary is going from $250,000 a year to $1.2 million annually. His father congratulates him and says that this is “quite an American accomplishment.” He is also told by his father that in this (bad) life, sometimes you have to chuck stuff. Soon after, Nicolas Cage shoots his arrow and hits the mark. The next thing the audience sees is Nicolas Cage in New York while his family watches him on TV from Chicago. He has taken the job and the money. He states with a smile on his face that he doesn’t have his job or his family so instead, “I’ll take this American accomplishment.” So, in essence, he has “chucked” the stuff of his children and his family for this fleeting American accomplishment. He smiles into the camera and says, “Hello, America.” There is a tremendous danger in the ideology that sacrifices those things that are truly dear (family, children, home) and exalts material wealth and gain. In the Bible, Mark 8:36 states, “For what shall it profit a man, if he gains the whole world, and lose his own soul?” Or in this case, “also loses the souls of his children and his family?”
This entire production is a depressing one hundred minutes that starts slow and goes downhill from there. Add to that the extremely foul language, the poor directing, the morose performances, the gratuitous sex scenes, the nudity, the implied pedophilia, and the dangerous philosophy of material gain, THE WEATHER MAN is a total waste of time. So, the ultimate forecast for this movie: don’t waste your time or your money.
THE WEATHER MAN is severely lacking. The script is predictable, one-dimensional and boring. Plus, the overly abundant use of the "f" word shows a total lack of creativity and originality. Nicolas Cage seems half-asleep for the entire film. Michael Caine looks like he doesn’t even want to be in this movie. The weather man’s children seem to have taken the same acting class that Nicolas Cage took for the film. The movie also contains very strong sexual content and nudity. Finally, its humanist worldview teaches that there is no inherent meaning in life and humans can and must create meaning for themselves. Because of that, the protagonist is ready and willing to take a lucrative job far away from his children.