William H. Macy’s true gift hasn’t been the way he perfectly embodies life’s losers but the way he has made such sorry schlubs interesting. That quality isn’t on display in The Cooler, in which Macy plays a luckless gambler employed by a second-rate casino owner (Alec Baldwin) to cool off tables with hot streaks. This is another Macy sad sack, but the first one you would call boring. So is the movie, which turns an intriguing premise into a
dull romantic drama when Bernie falls in love with a waitress (Maria Bello). And don’t be fooled by Baldwin’s Oscar-nominated performance – he’s doing a Sopranos imitation.