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“World’s Greatest Dad”
Reviewer:
Wayne Klein
Studio: Magnolia Home Video
Genre:
Comedy
Release Date:
12/08/09
Special Features:

Featurettes, outtakes, deleted scenes, audio commentary

Review:

The ironically titled “World’s Greatest Dad” gives Robin Williams one of the best roles of his career as a rather clueless and lost father. Lance Clayton (Williams) teaches at a private high school writing novels that no one will buy. His son (Daryl Sabara) is a jerk and doesn’t think much of his father like most 16 year olds. No one seems interested in his class either until a tragedy alters the trajectory of Lance’s life. Lance finds his life revived, his writing career beginning to soar and his relationship with his noncommittal girlfriend Claire (Alexie Gilmore) going to the next level when Lance exploits that tragedy. At the same time Lance finds himself slowly falling apart while the world finally gels around him. Lance continues to get sucked down the rabbit hole of sudden tragic celebrity. Lance creates a monster in his attempt to cover up the circumstances of the family tragedy that engulfs him and the monster threatens to overwhelm him. ***

Written and directed by comedian Bobcat Goldthwait “World’s Greatest Dad” bristles with dark comic energy particularly after the tragic event changes his life. The performances are perfect throughout and the darkly comic tone never wavers—“World’s Greatest Dad” bravely treads where other films rarely want to go. ---

Image & Sound:

“Dad” looks good with bright colors, rich detail although there are some troubled spots here and there with a few sections that could have benefited from a bit more care in the transfer or it could be the result of the low budget of the film. ***

The 5.1 audio mix sounds pretty good with the dialogue front and center throughout. ---

Special Features:

Goldthwait appears on the audio commentary with some insightful and often humorous observations about the performances. ***

“ Behind the Scenes: WWBCD” made by Goldthwait’s daughter takes us behind-the-scenes of the film allowing the cast and crew to share their insights and feelings to the unusually dark subject matter and film. ***

“HDNet: A Look at ‘World’s Greatest Dad’” is a typical promo piece made for the station. ***

“I Hope I Become a Ghost” a music video by the band The Deadly Syndrome is also included. ***

We also get the theatrical trailer, deleted scenes and outtakes. ---

Final Words:

A darkly comic film filled with misunderstandings and a dad that finds himself suddenly extolled due to the tragedy that befalls him, “World’s Greatest Dad” is far from the traditional comedy that you might expect Robin Williams to appear in. Goldthwait’s film gives Williams the best role he’s had in ages and reminds us what a fine actor he is.

 

 
 
 
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