Owen Gleiberman
January 15, 2010 AT 05:00 AM EST

Wonderful World

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
89 minutes
Limited Release Date
01/08/10
performer
Matthew Broderick, Sanaa Lathan, Philip Baker Hall, Michael K. Williams
director
Joshua Goldin
distributor
Magnolia Pictures
author
Joshua Goldin
genre
Drama

We gave it a C

Matthew Broderick tends to be a very passive actor, which is why his best roles — like Ferris Bueller or the furious teacher in Election — wrench him out of that slightly dazed blobbiness. But he’s mired in passivity in Wonderful World, a scrappy indie modeled on the racial sentimentality of The Visitor. Broderick plays a mopey former kids’ singer who’s divorced, stuck in a dead-end job, and alienated from everyone but his saintly chess-playing roommate from Senegal (Michael K. Williams). When the roommate falls into a diabetic coma, Broderick finds romance with his sick friend’s sister (the terrific Sanaa Lathan). It’s all very sincere, but watching a dweebish depressive learn that Life Is Good is a lesson of diminishing returns. C

See all of this week’s reviews

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