The Soloist

Robert Downey Jr continues his career renaissance as Steve, an LA Times reporter that comes across the homeless Nathaniel (Foxx), once a musical prodigy.

It's a fairly predictable tale of a sardonic modern guy who finds his heart and soul in trying to help his fellow man, wondering if it's all misguided middle class guilt.

It's also partly about how we can't control everything we want to, as when Steve discovers that despite his best intentions, maybe Nathaniel just can't (or shouldn't) be helped. When he gets a dinghy apartment for his new friend so he doesn't have to sleep on the streets, he can't understand how constrained Nathaniel feels inside four walls.

It's also something of a love letter to Los Angeles and has an only-slightly related subplot in which the movie has something to say about the decline of newspapers in the digital age.

While Downey's sardonic persona perfectly suits roles like this and the fast-talking, narcissistic Tony Stark from the Iron Man movies, I'm starting to wonder if he can do anything else.

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