Quick recap: A selfish jerk kidnaps his disabled brother for money.
Fun (?) fact: It is in fact true that Qantas airlines has never had a commercial flight crash from 1921-today.
Thoughts and observations:
- Director Barry Levinson did a great job painting Charlie (Tom Cruise) as the worst human being alive because I still believed it at the end of the film. He has to dress like that AND sale rare cars? You’ve gone too far, Levinson.
- I was never able to fully appreciate Charlie and Raymond’s relationship mainly because it began when one brother kidnapped the other. I don’t care how many juice boxes you give, you can’t come back from that.
- I’ll go ahead and skip to the ending to point out that ‘ I no longer yell at my disabled brother’ is NOT growth.
- Why did this movie annoy me so much? I think it’s because Charlie tried to make the case that the group home was an inappropriate choice for Raymond with little to no facts. He barged in and assumed he could do a better job even though he had never heard of the term ‘autism’ before. He might have sweet memories of his brother when the two were younger but that doesn’t mean you will be a better caretaker.
- And no, Charlie, using your brother to win money is not funny or a great bonding moment.
- I’m not really sure what the lesson was here. Be nice to the Autistic because they may be worth a lot of money? No, you can’t keep your Autistic brother as a pet?
- Dustin Hoffman did a phenomenal job so I won’t give this movie one star, even though I’d really like to. I think it goes hand in hand with my distaste for Inspiration Porn. The disabled do not exist as a way for you to feel good about yourself. They are not brave or strong. They are real people with real struggles and deserve human dignity. That’ what Rain Man felt like, one long Good Morning America segment about a brother being just a little less of a jerk to his brother with Autism.
Final review: 2/5 only because of Dustin Hoffman
Up next: The Last Picture Show