Jack Nicholson is usually known for his electrifying, off-the-wall performances. The characters that Nicholson portrays are usually whacko, or at least extremely animated. Nicholson’s latest, About Schmidt shows another side of him; there are no raised eyebrows or violent contortions of Nicholson’s face, he appears as a regular guy–and it’s a brilliant performance.About Schmidt is a movie about a recently retired and widowed man who’s daughter is set to marry a complete idiot with a killer mullet. Schmidt sets out on a journey across Nebraska in his 35-foot Winnebago, attempting to make sense of his life on the way. He writes deeply personal letters to Ndugu, an African child he is sponsoring for 22 dollars a month. The movie really is about finding a purpose in life. Schmidt asks his young replacement if he has any questions about the job, he has none. Schmidt’s life is insignificant, he’s made no impact, he’s not a great man. Schmidt has to figure out his purpose–if he even has one.
Some of the best parts of this movie come when Schmidt journeys to Denver to meet his future relatives. Kathy Bates plays Roberta, the mother of Randall, boob, and future son-in-law to Schmidt. Bates is hilarious in her role, the theater erupted in laughter during her nude scene. Yes, if you ever wanted to see the whale that is Kathy Bates nude, now is your chance. Sorry Kathy, but you really are enormous. enormously funny. Another gut-busting scene involves Schmidt and a water bed, with rather wavy results. God, I’m killing myself. I can’t recall another time I’ve been in a theater where people were laughing this hard. I mean, not even in The Adventures of Pluto Nash were people laughing this hard.
About Schmidt is good time, a sophisticated movie with big laughs that will make you contemplate your own existence, maybe. Anyways, go see this movie, Nicholson is great, and you get to see Kathy Bates naked!