by David Ng
Guaranteed to cure you of any Cold War nostalgia held over from Thirteen Days and televisionís Fail Safe, Company Man is a sub-par Woody Allen spawn, a screwball comedy barely able to muster a single laugh in its 81 minute running time despite slavish adherence to the comic formula of Allenís early stage plays (Donít Drink the Water is the obvious inspiration here), and a game supporting performance Allen himself. Set in 1959, "a good time to be a white American male" according to its hero Allen Quimp, a nerdy instructor at a New England prep school, the movie attempts to explain how a monumental catastrophe such as the Bay of Pigs invasion could result from a white lie designed to please oneís wife. Writer / director Douglas McGrath aims for absurdity but achieves only cacophony as the wretched one-liners pile up and the stagy, stilted dialogue disintegrates into a yammering monotone.
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