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Review: 'Henry Poole Is Here'

Some touching moments in this tale of a man who doesn't believe in miracles but desperately needs one.

By Peter Rainer / August 16, 2008



In Mark Pellington's "Henry Poole Is Here," Luke Wilson, as Henry, is first seen buying a house for himself in a middle-class neighborhood in L.A. suburbia, where he proceeds to stock up on vodka and Krispy Kreme doughnuts. We soon discover that this disillusioned man is terminally ill. When a neighbor, Esperanza (the wonderful Adriana Barraza, from "Babel"), sees a stain on Henry's stucco wall and believes it to be an image of the face of Jesus, Henry's life, and his neighbors' lives as well, are upturned. He doesn't believe in miracles and yet is in desperate need of one. Some touching moments, but too blandly inspirational. Grade: C (Rated PG for thematic elements and some language.) In Mark Pellington's "Henry Poole Is Here," Luke Wilson, as Henry, is first seen buying a house for himself in a middle-class neighborhood in L.A. suburbia, where he proceeds to stock up on vodka and Krispy Kreme doughnuts. We soon discover that this disillusioned man is terminally ill. When a neighbor, Esperanza (the wonderful Adriana Barraza, from "Babel"), sees a stain on Henry's stucco wall and believes it to be an image of the face of Jesus, Henry's life, and his neighbors' lives as well, are upturned. He doesn't believe in miracles and yet is in desperate need of one. Some touching moments, but too blandly inspirational. Grade: C (Rated PG for thematic elements and some language.)

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