A fresh-out-of-the-mental institution father and his emancipated teenage daughter venture together on a quest for an ancient Spanish treasure buried beneath their local Costco in this take on the modern family and the American dream. Written by
Michael Douglas Plays Whacky-Zanny and This Movie is a Whole Lot of Good
After seeing the trailer for this movie and checking out the cast and filmmakers I made this a must see at this years Sundance Film Festival. The combination of Alexander Payne (Sideways,Election,About Schmidt) producing and Michael Douglas playing wacky gives hope for another great dramedy along the lines of Little Miss Sunsine and Sideways. King of California easily meets those hopes and for many it will be much more enjoyable then those former films. The movie features Douglas as Charlie a recently released mental patient with a whimsical fascination for buried Spanish treasure. While Charlie has been away his 16 year old daughter Miranda played by Evan Racheal Wood has managed to avoid child services, dropped out of school and support herself and their home by working full-time at Mcdonalds. Upon Charlies arrival home Miranda finds that life was much easier without Charlie around, not only does she have to support their home but now she has to take care of her unstable father. Persitent with his intent to search for a mythical buried Spanish treasure Miranda begrudgingly agrees to help him. The movie finds its humor and warmth in the moments shared between Charlie and Miranda during their treasure hunting through developed suburbia that leads them to a unlikely final destination. In the end the real treasure may not be the gold after all but the love between a daughter and father.
The ever developing Evan Racheal Wood is solid in the role of Miranda, the whole movie develops through her narration and her acting is effortlessly touching. Michael Douglas is outstanding and in true form here, from start to finish he's a joy to watch, this is easily his best performance since Wonder Boys. This will definitely be one of the best movies in 2007, expect praise a plenty for Douglas come awards time.
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