Kristen Wiig stars as Alice Klieg. Alice has borderline personality disorder and she has just stopped taking her meds. As the movie begins, she has just won $86 million in the lottery. So she moves into a room at an Indian casino – don’t ask why – and she pays $15 million to a small TV station so she can star in her own talk show. The station is losing money fast, so the owners – brothers Rich (James Marsden) and Gabe (Wes Bentley) - agree to all her demands.
This is a really quirky movie. Alice obviously needs help, but the only person trying to help her is her therapist Daryl (Tim Robbins). Daryl tries to get her to go back on her meds but there isn’t much he can do. The crew at the TV station rolls their eyes but they go forward and agree to every one of Alice’s requests, which include things like singing her own theme song and riding into the studio in a swan.
Kristen Wiig is always hilarious, but this is maybe the most serious work she has done. At first we laugh at this character making a fool of herself on TV, but as the movie goes on we realize how messed up she is. There’s a scene late in the movie when she hits rock bottom and wanders naked through the casino and we really get a sense of how lost and alone she feels. Even her best friend Gina (Linda Cardellini) leaves her when she can’t put up with Alice’s narcissism anymore.
The movie made me laugh at times, but as her talk show went on it just got tedious. The stuff she does on her show is only funny for about two minutes. I got tired of the bits where she has actors re-enact painful moments from her past, like the time someone stole her makeup at camp. As good as Wiig is, the movie just didn’t work for me.