There used to be this cool bit on the Carol Burnett show about a writer. The stage would be set and we would watch a scene being written. But then the writer would change his mind and instead of a gun, the man would pull out a knife. Instead of killing the woman, he would kiss her. And so on and so forth. The idea has been used recently in a series of commercials for voice recognition software where a kid writes a story about a pirate with an eggbeater for a hand.
I’ve always liked to play this game myself. Imagine what would have happened if I had turned left instead of right. At the start of every life there are infinite possibilities, but over time, those possibilities narrow further and further down. Until only one possibility is left, death.
And so it is with Mr Nobody. We met an old man in the future, 2092 to be exact, and he is the last mortal human on earth. We listen as he tells the story of his potentiality. We find out that he was missed when the angels went about wiping everyone’s mind, so he can see things others can’t. We watch as about four lives are lived out in a mishmash fashion that requires you to pay a bit of attention to keep track of what is going on.
Mr Nobody was a good looking film, but the casting of Jared Leto was a huge mistake, as he looks a hell of a lot like Jim Carrey, so all the cool set pieces where he sees the world being made look like they were lifted straight out of The Truman Show. Then there was the general problem that Mr Nobody was a total tool who basically tortured the three women he married. He is never happy with his life, no matter how perfect it winds up being. And one of the story lines is, in fact, a story. He’s a writer and we spend a bit of time watching one of his Sci-Fi stories unfold.
I like Mr Nobody, for the most part. The end was a bit silly, but since it was covering an event none of us can know or understand, it made as much sense as the rest of the film.