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Review: Adam

Sensitive and subtle
By PETER KEOUGH  |  August 6, 2009
2.5 2.5 Stars

As opposed to what happens in most films about mentally challenged characters, the protagonist of Max Mayer's debut feature does not regress into a stereotype. Instead, he shows by contrast how stereotyped all the other characters are.

Hugh Dancy is sensitive and subtle in depicting the effects of Asperger Syndrome — a milder form of autism that limits one's ability to interact with people. Adam is obsessed with space and engineering, and after his father dies, he's left alone in his own little world — actually, it's a solar system that he's re-created in his Manhattan apartment.

New neighbor Beth (Rose Byrne) responds to Adam's innocence, but his fall, and the movie's, develops from his entanglement in her trite family melodrama, which involves a wayward dad (Peter Gallagher). Adam doesn't go in for tidy resolutions, but the unintended moral is that gazing at the stars sure beats empathizing with tiresome people.

Related: Review: Orphan, Review: The Black Balloon, The Big Hurt: Season's beatings, More more >
  Topics: Reviews , Health and Fitness, Medicine, Hugh Dancy,  More more >
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