In this midst of the abysmal summer movie selection, I resorted to my good ‘ol pal Netfilix for something to watch and I came across Solitary Man with Michael Douglas. This is a great little film and excellent companion to the terribly underrated Douglas movie Wonder Boys. Written and codirected by Brian Koppelman, the film is quiet but extremely moving – primarily because of the performance of Michael Douglas.
Douglas plays, Ben Kalmen, a player, a dog, an old dog – a really unlikable guy, but played with such finesse that you find yourself actually routing for him. The movie is great storytelling. It shows conflict that could be construed as “a story that’s already been told over and over again.” Not the case with this film. It takes you somewhere. You are moved. You keep watching and hoping that Ben Kalmen makes it on his journey to redemption and forgiveness.
The crappy release date of this movie makes it difficult to be a contender for this year’s award season. But Douglas’ performance should not be overlooked. It’s a stunner and resonates even more with the news of Douglas’ cancer diagnosis. Hopefully its release on DVD will remind the industry of this great leading man performance. Fingers crossed!