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"Anger Management"

"Anger Management" ... a mediocre script.

IF YOU feel particularly benign and footloose, then Colombia Pictures/ Revolution Studios' "Anger Management" is something you can see. But not before it makes you mad and laugh in parts.

Though it has the redoubtable Jack Nicholson in it, Adam Sandler is there too. And his brand of humour is of a kind that does not go down too well on occasions. The silly gags are used to carry the film forward all in the guise of reforming one poor, self-effacing chap.

Dave Buznik is a man who never gets upset. He is always walked over, pushed over and what have you. But he seems the ever-pleasant guy who wouldn't say boo to a goose. But then for every personality disorder (and this is one) there is a childhood nightmare or trauma. Which for Dave is one where the local bully embarrassed him in front of the girl he liked. Which makes him develop confrontation phobia and being unable to stand up for himself. How on earth he manages to attract the young and bright Linda (Marisa Tomei) is never explained — but suffice to say that she loves him and despairs over his attitude.

On a flight he happens to sit next to a wacky, old man, and a much-misunderstood incident lands him in court for assault and he is sentenced to a course on anger management. And who should be running this? Its Dr Buddy, the old man he sat next to on the airplane. Dr Buddy happens to be the anger expert and also the person who caused all the problems in the first place.

With his unorthodox methods of dealing with angry people, Dr Buddy convinces Dave that he suffers from a disease just like any other and puts him through sessions that include group therapy. Finally Dr Buddy moves in with Dave to record every moment of his routine. Which includes going to work with him and provoking reactions at every stage. It would seem that Dr Buddy is this psychotic, abusive, insulting therapist who probably needs to be reported to the authorities.

But there is an explanation for all that in the end, when things come to a head in the most predictable manner.

Jack Nicholson makes the best of his role and infuses life into it to the extent that he convincingly makes you irritated. That is the intention. Which also goes to show that the director (Peter Segal) believes his acting prowess will carry forward even a mediocre script.

Adam Sandler is effective enough to warrant sympathy every time he is made to get angry and victimised. Just leave all reasoning behind and maybe, you will enjoy this film.


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