Tick, Tick . . . Kablooey!

15 Minutes and Company Man

Nearly everyone is terrible except for Cumming, who just does what comes naturally and steals his every scene. In the film's best moment, Batista turns lounge lizard and sings a woozy "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend," a glimpse of satiric madness and good timing that, unlike the rest of the film, is over too soon. Could there be a better movie in here somewhere? In the age of the director as auteur, that's not something you're meant to ask. "Forget their legal rights for a moment," Nora Ephron was quoted as saying around the time of McGrath and Askin's suit. "Let's just ask the question: 'Will they get a better movie by removing the people who created it and whose vision inspired everyone to come aboard, and replac[ing] them with people who are not writers or directors?' That's like replacing a pilot with a passenger." The thing is, for everyone who knows the Zucker brothers, losing the pilot isn't always a bad idea— especially when you're looking for laughs.

15 Minutes was written and directed by John Herzfeld; produced by David Blocker and Herzfeld; and stars Robert De Niro, Oleg Taktarov and Karel Roden. Now playing countywide;Company Man was written and directed by Doug McGrath and Peter Askin; produced by John Penotti, Rick Leed and James Scotchdopole; and stars McGrath, Anthony LaPaglia and John Turturr. Now playing countywide.

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