"Not So Wonderful"
What You Need To Know:
WONDERFUL WORLD’s only highlight is Matthew Broderick as Ben. The story lumbers along without much conflict and contains a main character who is simply depressing. Ben comes off as especially whiney when he explains that his bitterness started when the record company didn’t promote his last album. While the movie ends on a positive note that Ben has made progress in life, there doesn’t seem to be much change. The movie’s foul language, constant marijuana use, lewd content, and pagan worldview will offend media-wise viewers.
(PaPaPa, FRFR, Ho, B, LLL, V, SSS, N, DDD, M) Very strong, somewhat mixed, dominant pagan worldview of marijuana addiction and African ancestor worship, plus one homosexual reference and a positive element where a father and daughter restore their relationship; 20 obscenities and eight profanities; no depicted violence but a man dies in bed; three graphic scenes of depicted sex; upper male nudity; no alcohol; near constant use of marijuana by main character; and, lying.
WONDERFUL WORLD is the story of Ben, who is bitter and angry about life in general and about “the man” in specific who he sees as running things. Over the course of the story, Ben falls in love and learns to be somewhat optimistic. He is able to have the confidence again to try his career as a children’s folk singer.
Much of the movie centers on Ben’s relationship with his roommate Ibou and Ibou’s sister from Sengal, Khadi. Khadi and Ben have a romance. Ibou goes into a diabetic coma. Meanwhile, Khadi leads Ben in a ceremony of ancestor worship in hopes that Ibou will recover.
Ben’s daughter, who lives with Ben’s ex-wife, gets more and more depressed when she is around Ben and eventually starts avoiding him. As Ben finds love with Khadi, he becomes more accessible to his daughter. In the end, their relationship with each other is restored. Ben’s own paranoia at life and belief that everything will turn out badly causes Ben to think that Khadi is only using him for a green card. This causes Khadi to leave him.
WONDERFUL WORLD’s only highlight is Matthew Broderick as Ben. The story lumbers along with not much conflict and a main character who is simply depressing. “The Man,” played by Philip Baker Hall, shows up whenever Ben is high, explaining that everything is all about money.
Ben is addicted to marijuana and uses it to escape his stresses of a dead end job and a failed marriage. Ben comes off as especially whiney when he explains that his bitterness started when the record company didn’t promote his last children’s album.
While the movie ends on a note that Ben has made progress in life, there doesn’t seem to be much change. The movie’s foul language, constant marijuana use, sex scenes, and pagan worldview will offend media-wise viewers.
There are much better dramas than this to see. You can check them out with a monthly subscription to MOVIEGUIDE®’s Internet Review Archives at www.movieguide.org.