"Morose, With A Strong Chance of Boring"
What You Need To Know:
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.
(HH, Cap, AP, LLL, V, SSS, NN, AA, DD, M) Strong secular humanism and materialism that deal primarily with the present world, financial gain and nothing spiritual, as well as existential philosophies showing that there is no inherent meaning in life and humans can/must create meaning for themselves, and movie presents a negative picture of American life, which is seen as mediocre; 81 obscenities (51 of which are "f" words) and three profanities; light violence includes the weather man beating up and punching child molester, plus the weather man gets a lot of fast food thrown at him from cars driving by him, and two 12-year-olds say they would like to “burn” their friend; depicted adultery, candid talk with slang terms for female genitalia, graphic discussion/argument of oral sex in front of 12-year-old daughter, character admits to Internet pornography addiction, discussion of how the son’s rehab counselor tried to molest him, sex toys and lewd acts used as name-calling devices; upper female nudity, upper male nudity while young boy has his photo taken by pedophile rehab counselor, and several quick shots of women’s clothed crotches and backsides; mild alcohol use as father sips drink, drunkenness implied as weather man stays up all night drinking; four shots of cigarette smoking, including a scene where two 12-year-old girls smoke and store clerk sells cigarettes to a minor, some references to son being in rehab for smoking pot; and, miscellaneous immorality such as overweight girl is called names by classmates.
THE WEATHER MAN follows Chicago TV weatherman David Spritz (Nicolas Cage) as he fumbles through the stormy clouds of his life and hopelessly looks for the silver lining.
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.