'Everything Must Go' is based on a short story by Raymond Carver. The film is directed and adapted for the screen by Dan Rush and stars Will Ferrell as Nick Halsey, a man who's definitely on his way down.
Nick is a career salesman who has always been on the top...but not anymore. The film opens with Nick being fired. If that isn't bad enough, Nick arrives home to find that his wife has changed the locks and thrown all his possessions out on the front lawn. What's a guy to do? Well since Nick is an alcoholic, the answer is simple...buy beer...a lot of beer.
So in between guzzling one beer after another, Nick rearranges the furniture on his front lawn and makes himself at home. He watches television, listens to music, and spies on his neighbors.
He also makes two new friends...His next door neighbor, Samantha (Rebecca Hall) a pregnant, lonely housewife. Apparently she's given up her photography career to move to Arizona for her husband's job, but he's nowhere to be found.
Nick's other friend is a chubby awkward young kid, Kenny (Christopher Jordan Wallace). Nick pays Kenny in beef jerky to watch his stuff while he makes a run to the local liquor store.
'Everything Must Go' is a character study about a man who has everything stripped away and is living in a state of complete despair. And now he must find a way to let go of everything...his wife, his belongings, his old way of life...in order to survive.
I really wanted to like this film. It raises important issues. Everyday people are losing their jobs, their homes and in some case their families. How does a person start over when everything is gone? Unfortunately, "Everything Must Go' doesn't delve deep enough into these profound issues. The film stays on one level as does Will Farrell's performance. But, I do respect him for trying something different as an actor.
This is one of those rare times that John and I agree. We both give 'Everything Must Go' a very low bagel rating. The film opens in theaters, Friday May 13, 2011.