‘Mr. Corman ‘, a bitter comedy about failure

Joseph Gordon-Levitt, as Josh Corman, in a still from the series.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt creates, directs and stars in this series that addresses the day-to-day life of a frustrated musician who teaches ten and eleven-year-olds

Iker Cortés

It can almost be said that the Apple TV + record in terms of content is flawless. The Cupertino platform does not cram its virtual grid with thousands of movies and series, but every time it releases one of its originals it raises expectations because they are usually productions with interesting stories, fantastic direction and production values, and scripts that risk more than the usual. To ‘Mr. Corman ‘we also wanted him because it means the return of Joseph Gordon-Levitt, creator, director, screenwriter and protagonist of fiction, to television.

In this bitter comedy, Gordon-Lewitt stars as Josh Corman, a frustrated musician from Los Angeles, teetotaler, in his thirties, who makes his living as a teacher, teaching fifth-grade kids. And already in the first bars of the story, two things are clear: that although he has left his musical career aside, what Josh is really interested in is playing with sound – he always does it in the fantastic opening credits, different in each chapter -, and that he is mired in an existential crisis and he does not stop wondering if achieving success or being irrelevant in such a competitive world is the result of work and perseverance or a silly stroke of luck. Because even though Josh is frustrated and even though he thinks his life is mediocre, he considers himself far above the rest. And he doesn’t quite understand why. He shares an apartment with Víctor Morales, a young Latino who works as a delivery man at UPS, and almost a year ago Megan, his longtime girlfriend and with whom he had a group, left him, in a breakup that has yet to be resolved. recovered.

Masterfully shot by several hands, ‘Mr. Corman ‘seduces by his close-ups, by his vibrant camera on his shoulder, by his brilliant sequence shots and by his heavy, leaving dialogue – “Did you always know that you would die alone?” Josh says to the affair one night after. a heated discussion. It’s not a pretty comedy. On the contrary, it is often harsh and hostile, even if a poor and sad musical number is dialed – in a more than conscious way – to talk about mother-child relationships, or dares to pose on screen a superhero battle to describe themes related to the friendship.

Three frames in the series.

Chapter by chapter, the personality of the protagonist is revealed. There are the traumas of the past and present, the insecurities, the bad relationship with his sister, the leftover of religion and a past in an unstructured family of which the viewer is getting to know bits and pieces. Most amazing of all, the pulse behind the camera never seems to be lost. Aurora Guerrero signs the spectacular second episode, which suffocatingly portrays mental problems such as anxiety and panic attacks, so present in society and at the same time a taboo, even more terrible when one has to deal with American health insurance.

Smart decisions

But it is that ‘Mr. Cormán ‘also makes intelligent decisions and allows himself to change history and focus one of his chapters on Víctor, entitled, of course,’ Mr. Morales’ (Arturo Castro is incredible), in a tender and funny reflection on how difficult parenthood is when one is divorced, but he must continue to fight with his ex-partner to give his daughter the best possible education, or delve into other possible lives for Josh Corman in quite a ‘What if?’ that is nourished by Michel Gondry-style visual tricks and that show the excellent actor that Gordon-Levitt is – there is a clear tribute to the type of character that Leonardo Dicaprio embodies in ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’, which Gordon masterfully embroiders).

One chapter from its conclusion, it can only be said that it is a magnificent, original and stark proposal. The only but is that it is difficult to see where it is going. Perhaps it is the eighth episode that will give the answer. Meanwhile, it is being an interesting trip.

‘Mr. Corman ‘is available on Apple TV +.


The trailer for the series.


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‘Mr. Corman ‘, a bitter comedy about failure