Damn. The songs are great but the movie unfortunately earns almost none of them. The whole thing feels too quick and slight to offer any true dramatic heft or genuine feeling. It's as if someone said, "Quick - tell the story of an 1800s entertainer with modern songs but don't spend more than 5 minutes on any particular plotline or theme!"
I'm not much of a fan of the common rom com but dammit this one worked its charms on me. With genuinely likable leads, a compelling villain (Michelle Yeoh is a goddess), great music, and plenty of laughs this has everything you need for an entertaining two hours at the movies.
Michael Moore has the power to turn people against each other in record time if you happen to disagree on his merits as a documentary filmmaker but with Bowling For Columbine I truly believe he defined a time period of American history better than any other cinematic resource. He asks some very difficult questions here that ultimately can't be answered definitively but as a conversation starter this is perfection.
The saddest thing about it though is that 10 years later…
If someone had told me ten years ago that Ben Affleck was about to direct three standout films in a row with the third film destined for numerous Oscar nominations, I would have slapped said person hard and unleashed a barrage of expletives at him/her with a thick (and horribly fake) Boston accent. At the time no one would have thought me out of line, but sure enough, Affleck has proven me wrong in a very big way.