First-time screenwriter Zach Helm has crafted a clever ode to creative constipation on par with Charlie Kaufman’s Adaptation (to which Helm owes a great debt). Both movies play games with the ways writers back themselves into a corner and the ways they try to get out of it. The pawn here is Harold Crick (Will Ferrell, stretching without pulling anything), an obssessive-compulsive IRS agent whose ordered existence unravels when a woman’s voice begins narrating his life. Turns out the narrator is a novelist (Emma Thompson) having trouble finishing her book about … Harold Crick. Helm uses Thompson’s narration to guide the movie, but it is hardly a narrative crutch. He’s written some lovely, novelistic material that drops us right into the mind of his main character. Directed by Marc Forster (Finding Neverland) and with spot-on supporting work by the likes of Dustin Hoffman, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Queen Latifah.