Malcolm | Chicago Reader

Malcolm

Rube Goldberg-like inventor who can't hold job joins with a pair of Melbourne marginals to rob some banks. Overheavy on the whimsy, despite Bill Forsyth's being nowhere in the neighborhood, though for some unaccountable reason this negligible down-under feature (by the husband-and-wife team of screenwriter David Parker and director Nadia Tass) came away with the Australian Film Institute best picture award (1986). The self-conscious cuteness wears out its welcome quickly (the bank-robbing gizmos are about as clever as those talking trash cans in old antilitter movie trailers), and Tass strikes too few notes in her wistful, patronizing direction to make the idiot-savant portraiture rise above sentimental cliche. With John Hargreaves, Colin Friels, and Lindy Davies.

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