For a comedy about autoerotic asphyxiation, epic deception, and shameless exploitation, World's Greatest Dad is a surprisingly sweet and tender affair.
The work of stand-up jokester-turned-auteur Bobcat Goldthwait, World's Greatest Dad delivers an off-center but observant skewering of mass hypocrisy and media cynicism - and offers a touching portrait of a sad-sack high school English teacher with aspirations that exceed his talents.
Robin Williams, playing it low-key and loser-y, is the teacher, Lance Clayton, a single dad who lives with his crass, bitter, jerky teenage son, Kyle (Daryl Sabara). It's a relationship of one-sided abuse (Lance is on the receiving end), and it takes a dark turn early on. Kyle, with few friends and fewer ambitions, is the kind of kid who might think Columbine a good idea - that's not what happens here, but he's a disturbing creep, unredeemingly unlikable, that's for sure.