Marking a return to the low-budget territory that launched his career in 1989 (with SEX, LIES, AND VIDEOTAPE), Steven Soderbergh pulls together this freewheeling comedy that is stuffed with an onslaught of visual and verbal puns. Soderbergh plays dual roles as Fletcher Munson and Dr. Jeffrey Korchek. Munson is a nerdy copywriter who finds himself under an extreme amount of pressure when his boss dies, leaving him to write the upcoming speech for T. Azimuth Schwitters, a revered spiritual leader. Korchek is a dentist who begins to have an affair with Munson's wife but finds himself in trouble when he falls for a new patient. Also thrown into the mix is Elmo Oxygen (David Jensen), an orange-jumpsuit-wearing exterminator who spends more time sleeping with his clients than doing actual work. By the time the moment comes for Schwitters to give his speech, the life of each character has been turned completely upside down. Soderbergh mocks, satirizes, and criticizes the late 20th century's hurried, soulless atmosphere, including religion, marriage, the media, the workplace, and male-female sexual relations. This fresh blend of lighthearted comedy and crackling dialogue makes SCHIZOPOLIS an exhilarating romp that recalls the early comedies of Richard Lester.
Steven Soderbergh's SCHIZOPOLIS is a surreal and antirealistic satire of the "synthetic" nature of postmodern life, concentrated in the story of a mild-mannered, wildly imaginative nebbish (Soderbergh himself) who pulls in paychecks as a spin doctor for an L. Ron Hubbard-like religious figure. The outlandish comedy mocks office life, the institution of marriage, the media's influence, and anything else that pops into Soderbergh's head at that very moment. The film unfurls at an unrelenting pace, making for a hysterical romp that never takes itself too seriously.