House of D

Rated PG-13 2005

David Duchovny's sappy vanity project is the tortured tale of a plucky 13-year-old (Anton Yelchin) facing tough choices, family tragedy, and raging hormones. It commits almost every crime the coming-of-age genre is prone to, including fake charm, precious melancholy, and some preposterous turns of plot. It tries hard to be sensitive and touching -- it's even got Robin Williams as a retarded janitor pedaling a broken-down bicycle -- but it has an inflated sense of its power to move us. Duchovny wrote the script, directed, and plays the protagonist as a grown-up, so there's no use trying to spread the blame around: This is his stinker, and his alone. With Tea Leoni (aka Mrs. David Duchovny) as the boy's distraught, pill-popping mother, and Erykah Badu as the streetwise muse who calls advice down to him from the window of her prison cell in New York's Women's House of Detention. D is for Dreadful. And Duchovny.

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House of D

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