Fathers' Day [1997]

Billy Crystal plays the straight man to neurotic Robin Williams when these two very different individuals join forces to find a runaway teenager. Both, you see, have been told they are the boy's father by Nastassja Kinski, with whom each had once been involved. This Disney production is based on the more humorous French farce, Les Compères, by Francis Veber (who cowrote this adaptation). It has its moments as breezy entertainment, but the plot is sloppy enough to seem more like slapstick than sophisticated comedy. The gags are contrived, and it fails to unfold with believability, or grace. More interesting than the writing are the performances, as Crystal brings surprising depth to his cynical lawyer and Williams is exceptionally fine-tuned as a suicidal and dippy writer with a very kind heart. --Rochelle O'Gorman

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