Projections - Movie Reviews

World Traveler

World Traveler

Billy Crudup's Cal in Bart Freundlich's World Traveler isn't a far cry from his characters dealing with crisis in Almost Famous and Jesus' Son.  But here, in another 70s-ish counterculture road trip, the actor isn't able to make his role involving as in the others.

The director, who also wrote the screenplay, sets up Cal as an architect, married with a kid and living in New York, who gets up and leaves one day.

Escaping his life on his son's birthday, he finds out there are many people who are troubled, including a construction worker (Cleavant Derricks) whose marriage Cal has impacted.

Karen Allen is descent as a jaded waitress Cal encounters; Liane Balaban is an energetic hitchhiker and James LeGros (Scotland, Pa.) fills a friendly old school chum with much bitterness.

Also, as Cal is on path to clear the air with his irresponsible father (David Keith), Mary McCormack has some choice words for the handsome Cal, and Freundlich's wife, Julianne Moore (The End of the Affair) gets a lot off her chest as a messed-up mother.

Unlike his remarkable turn in Jesus' Son along with Samantha Morton, Crudup can't deliver any insights into a man who feels nothing from a comfortable, loving lifestyle.  The rambling story, with its Willie Nelson tunes, doesn't have the essentials for the solid actor to make something out of his remote anti-hero who sleeps around.

World Traveler

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