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Stars: Matthew Perry, Lynn Collins, Mary Steenburgen, Kevin Pollak, Bob Gunton, Helen Shaver

Director: Harris Goldberg

An autobiographical pic by the writer/director of The Master of Disguise, possibly history's worst film, wouldn't seem too promising. But wait. Surprisingly, Numb does have its moments.

Perry plays Hudson, a morose writer who, seemingly a classic manic depressive, is diagnosed with depersonalisation disorder - he's also a kleptomaniac with a domineering mother. A female acquaintance (the very interesting Collins) seems to be a saviour, but they're obviously destined to break up, and Hudson embarks on an affair with his (third) shrink, feistily played by Steenburgen.

The films has some nice touches here and there, and is kinda half-way there as a winning offbeat entertainment. In the end, though, Hudson's glumness is just too much, his depression communicating itself to the audience. Nice try, though: there's hope for Mr Goldberg yet.

David Quinlan

Canada/USA 2007. UK Distributor: The Works. Technicolor.
85 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 2, Swearing 2.

Review date: 12 Jun 2008