April 11, 2010

Adam - 2009

Director: Max Mayer
Writer: Max Mayer
Starring: Hugh Darcy, Rose Byrne, Peter Gallagher, Frankie Faison

"I can tell you're upset, but I don't know what to do." The debut of Max Mayer, Adam tells the story of a man (Darcy) with Asperger syndrome, living alone in New York City, and his attempt to properly connect with another person (Byrne).

Films with main characters that are mentally "different" in some way often come under criticism, usually from groups organized to protect such individuals. However, I never heard this happening with Adam, and I don't see it happening if the film increases in popularity. While the syndrome did not become an official diagnosis until 1994, Darcy's performance neither disrespects actual Asperger sufferers nor depicts it incorrectly. The supporting cast is a great foil to the film's title character, and Mayer's script and direction makes Asperger syndrome identifiable as simply a more intense version of the lack of identifiability with one's fellow man experienced by us all, to varying degrees. I highly recommend this, especially considering the skill of the intermingling of comedic beats while still keeping it a drama overall.

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