It’s been 11 years since Gus Van Sant wrote and directed a movie (Paranoid Park), but based on the trailer for Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far On Foot, he hasn’t lost his Oscar-nominated touch. Based on cartoonist John Callahan’s memoir of the same name, Don’t Worry stars Joaquin Phoenix as an alcoholic who becomes a paraplegic after a drunk-driving accident. Rather than let something terrible define him, though, he seeks treatment and finds friendship with an AA group. The subject matter could be maudlin, but between Van Sant’s honest touch, Phoenix’s warts-and-all acting, and the dark humor found in Callahan’s source material, Don’t Worry is one to look out for.
Here’s the official plot summary.
After Portland slacker John Callahan (Joaquin Phoenix) nearly loses his life in a car accident, the last thing he intends to do is give up drinking. But when he reluctantly enters treatment – with encouragement from his girlfriend (Rooney Mara) and a charismatic sponsor (Jonah Hill) – Callahan discovers a gift for drawing edgy, irreverent newspaper cartoons that develop a national following and grant him a new lease on life.
Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot — which also stars Jack Black, Beth Ditto, and Carrie Brownstein and Kim Gordon (!) — opens on May 11.