By jimchudnow
Written March 19, 2009
(Based on an advance preview:) JOHN MALKOVICH stars as an over-the-hill entertainer, a thought-reader “mentalist” based on the life of The Amazing Kreskin. In this film, his character is quite accurately described as “CHEESY but CHARMING". He needs a new personal assistant, and the job is given to a student named Troy (played by COLIN HANKS) who’s fed up with the idea of being a lawyer, to the dismay of his father (played by his real-life father TOM HANKS). Malkovich has an unforgettable “greeting” when he meets people, & he exudes a “barely-tolerant” outgoing smarminess when he wants to impress his audience. He can be unkind to associates, or put on an enchanting appeal when he feels it’ll help him. Malkovich is a real PLEASURE to watch in this role, as is Colin with his relaxed naturalness (abetted by his girlfriend played by EMILY BLUNT). It’s a gentle comedy, enjoyed more for its situational actions rather than any wild or especially witty dialogue; in other words, it “WORKS".
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Worth the Buck

By kab679
Written March 24, 2009
Excellent! John Malkovich play the character of a man on the edge of total rage really well.
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THE GREAT BUCK HOWARD = Very Good Entertainment

By lugubriousthespian
Written April 13, 2009
John Malkovich again proves why he is one of the most deceptively versatile actors working today. He totally immerses himself into the very enigmatic role of Buck Howard that is loosely based on the character of Kreskin, a mentalist who used to regularly appear as a guest on Johnny Carson. Very perceptive storytelling here as Tom Hanks pays homage to time nearly forgotten through a man who's career is nearly the same - all he needs is one big comeback. It also is a very nice showcase for Hanks' son Colin as the naive young road manager and Emily Blunt as possibly too-wise-for-her-years celebrity publicist. Many funny cameos by popular t.v. personalities lend a air of authenticity to the proceedings which are all about conning an audience with a bit of slight of hand and old-school razzamatazz showbiz!
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Whimsical; optimistic

By ngerken41
Written April 04, 2009
A pleasant afternoon at the movies. Probably best for those who remember Johnny Carson and the Amazing Kreskin; but also works all who love John Malkovich. We had a good time.
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Great Movie a must see for any performer

By magc9
Written December 06, 2010
I love this movie I have performed with Kreskin and John Malkovich nails it . I also feel Colin Hanks was perfect in the role of troy. Dont let this movie slip past you its a must see.
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