Stranger than Fiction
- 1 hr 53 min
Stranger Than Fiction tells the story of Harold Crick (Will Ferrell), an IRS agent who lives a monotonous, predictable life. One day he begins to hear a voice in his head that is narrating his life as if he were a character in a novel. The voice accurately describes every action and thought in his head, so when the voice goes on to predict his imminent death he is terrified. After visiting with a therapist whose only attempt at helping him is to diagnose him with schizophrenia and prescribe medication, he decides to ask a different sort of professional for help. He goes in to meet with Professor Jules Hilbert (Dustin Hoffman), a literature professor at the local university, in the hopes that he may help him figure out what story he is in. With a little bit of convincing, Professor Hilbert is on board for scouring literature past and present to help Harold find clues on what may lead to his death. In the midst of this search, Harold begins to fall in love with a liberal bakery owner that he is auditing. With Harold's characteristic awkwardness, the relationship begins on shaky ground. After coming to no real solution on the identity of the narrator or how to stop the story of Harold's life from progressing toward his death, Professor Hilbert encourages Harold to just live his life. This inspires him to end his monotonous routine, take a break from work, and to pursue what is most pleasurable: the simple things like a woman, a friend, and a guitar. This is when his relationship with Ana Pascal (Maggie Gyllenhaal) turns bright. The story of his life continues to play out as the narrator tells of his steady transformation from a dull IRS agent to a charming lover and guitar enthusiast. His death comes closer everyday and Harold is no longer afraid of it. Eventually he discovers the voice in his head is a local author, Karen Eiffel (Emma Thompson). He goes to meet with her, a chain-smoking, pessimistic novelist with writer's block, and discovers that the manuscript that tells the story of life and death is already written, just not typed yet. The movie ends on an inspiring note as Harold comes to know what truly matters in life. Overall, the film contains elements of comedy, drama, and romance and will appeal to many different audiences.