A Life More Ordinary

Depression is--well, yes--a depressing topic. It costs the nation gazillions annually in medical bills and in man-hours lost to, and we're speaking literally here, downtime.

Yet there is this paradox about it: it's one of our most reliable sources of laughter, the subject of, just last year, some of our most interesting and weirdly entertaining movies. Punch-Drunk Love, Adaptation and About Schmidt are all bleak comedies about emotionally stunned or stunted people trying, in their herky-jerky ways, to avoid a completely comatose condition.

To their number we must now add American Splendor, which is technically a biopic about a guy named...

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