A New York City architect (Billy Crudup) leaves his beautiful wife and his beautiful son, gets behind the wheel of a large automobile, and drives across the country wailing ”How did I get here?” as he messes up lives around him in Bart Freundlich’s simplistic male ponderthon, World Traveler. The short answer: It has to do with Dad.
Crudup is so good an actor that even when his character, Cal, is forced to endure repeated compliments about his beauty, he is able to downplay the inanity of such scripted moments. He’s so good that even when Cal, entangled with a hectic, unstable lady (Freundlich’s own lady, Julianne Moore, working a little too hard at glitter-eyed craziness), rides a ferris wheel at a state fair, he manages to offset the indie hokum of the setting. Crudup is the best navigator a road movie like World Traveler can have, but even he can’t single-handedly transport these goods from nowhere to somewhere. C