ROG'S VIEWPOINT - After a terrible tragedy, New York advertising executive Howard (Will Smith) withdraws from family and friends. He desperately seeks answers by writing letters to Love, Death and Time. Soon he is
visited by actors Amy (Keira Knightley), Brigitte (Helen Mirren) and Raffi (Jacob Latimore) who reveal themselves to be Love, Death and Time. These thespians were hired by his business partners Whit (Edward Norton), Claire (Kate Winslet) and Simon (Michael Peña) who are trying to reconnect with him. The success of their company is at stake. Fine performances, especially an award-worthy turn by Helen Mirren, are hampered by a disjointed story that never fully comes together. Director David Frankel ("The Devil Wears Prada") and writer Allan Loeb try hard to hide a couple of twists, but in the process they soften the message and lose clarity in what should have been a first class tearjerker. Ironically, even the hidden beauty of New York City is lost through the camera lens of Maryse Alberti. By the time the surprise uplifting ending arrives, no one cares. "Collateral Beauty" is damaged goods. **

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