Robin Williams slips into mopey mode (so, he sports a beard, natch) to play a New York novelist moonlighting as a radio personality. Still smarting from his breakup with boyfriend Bobby Cannavale, Williams strikes up a phone friendship with AIDS-afflicted Rory Culkin--the 14-year-old has written a memoir about his sexual abuse at the hands of his parents.
But Williams has doubts about Culkin's story, so he travels to Wisconsin to meet the kid and adoptive mom Toni Collette. Director Patrick Stettner creates a creepy mood and builds intrigue, but his Night ends up stumbling in the dark. The twisty but thin script is neither complex enough to be a fascinating character study nor exciting enough to be a satisfying thriller. Night's bright spot is the always-wonderful Collette, whose highly f--ked-up character deserves more exploration and screen time, à la Kathy Bates in Misery. We'd gladly pay to see Collette take out Williams--and his beard.
--Matt Stevens
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