Confessions of a Dangerous Mind

Published: Monday, January 27, 2003 at 2:43 p.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 27, 2003 at 2:47 p.m.

Confessions of a Dangerous Mind is a difficult movie to review. It has conflicting aspects that could say different things to different people. On the surface, CoaDM is a story (almost documentary-like at times) about Chuck Barris, the creator and producer of such quality television programming as The Dating Game, The Newlywed Game and The Gong Show.


Confessions of a Dangerous Mind

Rated R

Playing at Royal Park Theaters

The movie is an on-screen adaptation of Chuck Barris's autobiography of the same name. In it, Barris claims to have been hired by the CIA to perform covert operations and assassinations. Is it true? Who knows. Does he really believe it? I don't think anyone short of Mr. Barris can say for sure. However, the movie treats it as if it was true and quite an interesting story ensues.

It's mostly a comedy, though it also grapples with a few more serious issues. I suppose the term is `dramedy'. It certainly isn't a light-hearted comedy, at the least. The screenplay was written by Charlie Kaufman, who is also responsible for writing Being John Malkovich, if that tells you anything about the kind of strange movie that it is.

The movie stars Sam Rockwell, who you probably haven't heard of and George Clooney, Julia Roberts and Drew Barrymore, who you probably have. They all do a good job portraying their characters, but because the movie is so unclear in its motives (is it supposed to be funny, or a true story? Or neither?) I found it hard to really enjoy their performances. You may also like the brief appearances by Brad Pitt and Matt Damon.

If you don't have a taste for movies that are out of the ordinary, include casual violence and jokes about anal sex, you may not enjoy Confessions of a Dangerous Mind. However, if you're not afraid to laugh at blowjobs and assassinations, then I think you should see this movie.

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