Historians have come to a general consensus about which creations constitute the pinnacle of human creative achievement: Michelangelo's David, Da Vinci's Mona Lisa, Shakespeare's Hamlet. Few of us are fortunate enough to live in a time where an artist finally masters his medium and creates a work of such inspiring, enduring brilliance that its light shines across the ages. Now, however, ours will be remembered as the age when film finally found its champion. The debate which once raged about the relative merits of Citizen Kane vs. Casablanca can now fall silent: As the end of the twentieth century nears, Good Burger has achieved cinematic perfection.
The story of Ed (Kel Mitchell) and Dexter (Kenan Thompson) and how they rescue the Good Burger restaurant from destruction at the hands of the domineering Mondo Burger is more than just the story of warriors battling the onslaught of corporate tyranny; it is a metaphor for the transcendence of the human spirit. Like our Homeric heroes Ed and Dexter, each of us must struggle to find a place in the universe -- only then can we truly be free.
As Ed, Kel Mitchell delivers an interpretation of mentally-challenged existence that is so powerful that actors across the country will likely observe a moment of awestruck silence when Mitchell accepts his Academy Award for Best Actor in March. Brian Robbins is sure to get the nod as Best Director for evolving the medium to unprecedented levels . And not since Henry Fonda won for "On Golden Pond," has an actor nearing death deserved a nomination more than Abe Vigoda. Who but Vigoda could deliver lines like "I think I broke my ass" with such indomitable spirit? His portrait of proud Otis, the aging fast food employee, is both complex and compelling -- and a powerful comment on the plight of geriatrics everywhere.
In fact "Good Burger" is so stirring, it was as if director Brian Robbins had reached into my body and poured a little bit of wonder into my soul. His masterful skills in telling this epic of survival and hope reduced the audience to stunned silence; many, including this reviewer, wept openly.
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