There are few Actors that are as multi talented as the late Robin Williams. His genius was his rapid fire timing of intelligent comedic wit. As funny as Robin was, he also was a brilliant dramatic actor. He didn’t win an Oscar for nothing! It was for his riveting dramatic role in “Good Will Hunting” plus he was nominated three times in the category for best actor in a leading role, by the voting Academy Award members . Coupled with his numerous Golden Globe, Emmy and Comedic Awards ,has cemented Williams extraordinary career in our minds and hearts.
“Boulevard” is his last leading dramatic role. The plot is of a sexually repressed “closeted” sixty-one year old banker. Married to Joy (Kathy Baker) who are living in separate bedrooms and emotionally living separate lives. Until one “random night,” Nolan Mack (Robin Williams) drives down hustler road and picks up Leo (Roberto Aguire) a young gay male prostitute. Voila` his life starts to change and has a rippling effect on those around him. (Why is a female who engages in sex for money a prostitute and a male who engages for sex is referred to as a hustler?) Directed by Dito Montiel. Written by Douglas Soesbe. The script is dated and stale for how enlighten the country is to the LGBT community. Mr. Soesbe doesn’t seem to fully understand or completely write about the older daddy homosexual role with a younger boy. That would have made for an interesting and poignant fresh script. Instead the script is dull, predicable and ambiguous .So many questions left unanswered IE: Why did his wife marry and stay with him? The direction of this repressed script is painfully slow to watch. It’s like watching paint dry. If it wasn’t for the natural illuminating presence of Robin Williams and Kathy Baker you could easily fall asleep. What is so sad is to think that this was his last film. A film that is depressing, constricted and restricted. A script that is not as multilayered as it could have been . It just seems so out of step with the present world. I wouldn’t be surprised if while acting out this role, Williams didn’t have the iconic Leiber and Stoller song, sung by Peggy Lee “Is that all there is ?” swirling in his head and heart.
RATED: 2 1/2 Honey 🐝 (Fly Robin Fly 🎶) Opens in San Francisco July 17th Landmark’s Opera Plaza Cinemas in San Francisco, and Landmark’s Shattuck Cinemas in Berkeley