6.7/10
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68 user 90 critic

King of California (2007)

Trailer
2:22 | Trailer

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An unstable dad who after getting out of a mental institution tries to convince his daughter that there's Spanish gold buried somewhere under suburbia.

Director:

Mike Cahill

Writer:

Mike Cahill

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Douglas ... Charlie
Evan Rachel Wood ... Miranda
Willis Burks II ... Pepper
Laura Kachergus ... Rita
Paul Lieber ... Doug
Kathleen Wilhoite ... Kelly
Anne L. Nathan ... Applebee's Manager (as Anne Nathan)
Arthur Santiago ... McDonald's Manager
Ashley Greene ... McDonald's Customer
Ian Hopps Ian Hopps ... Boy
Anna Khaja ... Officer Contreras
Will Rothhaar ... Security Guard
Annie O'Donnell ... Greeter
Greg Davis Jr. ... Joseph
Jeanie Hackett Jeanie Hackett ... Teacher
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Storyline

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 Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

We're All Searching for Something ... See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some strong language, mature thematic elements and brief drug references | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

12 September 2007 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

El rey de California See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$35,814, 16 September 2007, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$263,674, 26 October 2007
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The screenplay written by Michael Cahill was entered into the 2004 American Zoetrope Screenwriting contest and though didn't win, was a finalist. See more »

Goofs

In the flashback scene of Charlie playing the bass, his fingering is completely wrong for the bass notes in the musical cue. See more »

Quotes

Miranda: [first day with father back] So, it was time to get back on the old bi-polar pony, and ride.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Carroll Kales Cahill 1925-2006 See more »

Connections

Referenced in Impossible Dreams (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Malambo No. 1
Written by Moises Vivanco
Performed by Yma Sumac
Used by permission of Beechwood Music Corporation (BMI)
Courtesy of Capitol Records
Under licence from EMI Film & Television Music
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User Reviews

 
A very slow moving movie featuring superb acting from Douglas.
21 January 2008 | by Mr SaxonSee all my reviews

"King Of California" is the art house version of "National Treasure" or "Indiana Jones". It's the story of Charlie (Michael Douglas) who is released from the mental institution in which he has spent several years and is reunited with his sixteen year old daughter Miranda (Evan Rachel Wood). Although he is obviously a few sandwiches short of a picnic, Charlie manages to convince his daughter to join him in a quest for buried treasure. Together they move through Southern California looking for clues leading to the lost doubloons.

If, after reading that description of the plot, you're now expecting these two characters to run through dark tunnels with giant boulders rolling after them then you'd be wrong. "King Of California" is a slow and very quiet movie which focuses more on Charlie and Miranda repairing their relationship than the actual treasure hunt. Miranda has been forced to take a job at McDonalds in order to survive during her father's absence meaning that she is now the rational one whilst Charlie acts as a child. Their search for the treasure takes them to golf courses and busy stores where Charlie sees signs that they're on the right trail whilst Miranda, not fully believing in Charlie's dream, simply wants to spend some time with the father she's lost touch with.

Douglas gives one of his finest performances in recent years as Charlie, managing to make the character seem insane whilst also being totally appealing (witness the way in which he wins arguments by stating absurd facts and telling people to "look it up"). Evan Rachel Wood is also perfect in her role. It may not be as showy a role as Douglas' but Wood convinces you that Miranda absolutely loves her father despite all his faults (and he certainly has a lot).

Although I liked "King Of California", I really can't say that I loved it - the plot was perhaps a little too slow moving for my tastes. I certainly admired its message, however, that you should follow your dreams because dreams give you something to believe in. If you have patience and like character-driven movies which reveal their charms at a very leisurely pace (such as the movies "Sideways" or "Rushmore"), then I'd recommend watching "King Of California" for its superb acting and life-affirming message. Others - like myself - however, who prefer story lines to move along at a much quicker rate may find it a bit boring in places and slightly too whimsical overall.


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