Writer Bill Dubuque and Director Mark Williams have created a tender, sensitive family story that is well developed and addresses many of the issues we all face. A brilliant cast delivers the goods with style and empathy - and Chicago has never been so beautifully captured photographically as cinematographer Shelly Johnson has accomplished. The musical score is by the always-reliable Mark Isham.
As the boss (Willem Dafoe) of a Chicago-based headhunter, Dane Jensen (Gerard Butler), who works at the Blackridge Recruiting agency arranging jobs for engineers, prepares to retire, Jensen vies to achieve his longtime goal of taking over the company going head-to-head with his ambitious rival, Lynn Vogel (Alison Brie). Factors intervene: Dane's close friend Lou (Alfred Molina) is unemployed and desperate for work, Dane's wife Elise (Gretchen Mol) is concerned Dane is not spending time with his family, and Dane's 10-year-old son, Ryan (Max Jenkins), is suddenly diagnosed with Acute Lymphatic Leukemia by the doctor Singh (Anupam Kher) and his professional priorities at work and personal priorities at home begin to clash with one another. Dane spends quality time with Ryan by touring the beautiful architectural wonders of Chicago and Ryan's wise observations set Dane on a new path. Dane finds a job for Lou (at Dane's expense of giving up a headhunter's fee for a friend), and Dane and Elise grow closer. Dane is pulled between achieving his professional dream and supporting his wife and son, who need him now more than ever.
Much of the success of the film is attributable to the fine performance by Gerard Butler, but he is enhanced by the performances of the entire cast. A very 'feel good' movie, perfect to restore faith in humankind just when we need it the most.