The Forgotten Robin Williams Sci-Fi Fantasy You Can Stream Without Netflix

By Robert Scucci | Published

absolutely anything

Simon Pegg has been one of my favorite comedic actors ever since I first saw Shaun of the Dead, and I was thrilled to see that Absolutely Anything was not only streaming for free on Tubi, but also co-starring the late and legendary Robin Williams. Unfortunately for me, I have a tendency to just click on any title without knowing anything about it because I genuinely have no real hard likes or dislikes when it comes to my entertainment choices–I just want to see what’s out there. Sometimes I’m pleasantly surprised, but in the case of Absolutely Anything I’ll just say that my time would have been better spent watching reruns of Spaced instead.

Absolutely Anything

Absolutely Anything boasts one of those classic “be careful what you wish for” kind of narratives like The Monkey’s Paw. Instead of a cursed paw that messes with one’s fate, Simon Pegg’s Neil Clarke gets gifted supernatural powers from a distant alien species who debates whether they should allow Earth into their galactic council, or destroy the planet. The aliens decide that if Neil has the power to do absolutely anything he wants for 10 days, they’ll let Earth join the council if he uses his newfound powers for good.

If Neil uses his powers for evil purposes, the trigger-happy aliens will blow up the planet and kill everybody living on it.

Gag After Gag

I’ve repeatedly said in the past that I love a quick setup if it means that a movie’s run time is spent exploring the premise to its fullest potential instead of wasting its entire first act on exposition. But Absolutely Anything is not one of those films because it does nothing but set up gag after gag with little to no payoff once its narrative framework is established.

Once Neil realizes that he can do literally anything he wants, he wastes his powers trying to get his neighbor and romantic interest, Catherine (Kate Beckinsale) to fall in love with him. As the title suggests, he can do absolutely anything, but he decides that he wants his boss, Headmaster Mr. Robinson (Eddie Izzard), to be nice to him. He wishes that his students at his school would all disappear and stop bothering him, but immediately reverses his wish when the classroom explodes and kills them.

Enter Robin Williams

absolutely anything

My ears perked up when Neil granted his dog, Dennis (Robin Williams), the ability to speak and understand English. As a lifelong fan of Robin Williams, I was gravely disappointed when it quickly became clear that his voice-acting talent would be used for leg-humping jokes, and incessantly begging for biscuits for the remainder of the film. By the time Absolutely Anything gets into existential territory in the third act with Neil’s decision to fix the world’s many problems (war and climate change), it was already too late to redeem this movie that first tried to be witty, but then lost the plot with its many attempts to be an over-the-top, slap-stick gross out comedy.

Wasted Potential

Absolutely Anything is one of those movies that demonstrates how an amazing cast and fun idea can get in its own way if it fails to execute in a meaningful way. Pegg and the rest of his supporting cast understood the assignment, but I can’t in good conscience say that the assignment was worth their time given how great their past work had been leading up to this movie.

What’s more, this could have been a fun, low-stakes family film if it didn’t have an R rating. As far as I can tell, the only reason Absolutely Anything was rated R was due to its willingness to carpet-bomb the dialogue with f-bombs whenever the opportunity presented itself.

Stream It Now, If For Some Reason You Still Want To

absolutely anything


I always try to think of who movies like this are for, and in an effort to remain civil, I’m going put Absolutely Anything in the laundry-folding or dish washing category. If you want something playing in the background while you’re doing your household chores, you can fire up Tubi and give it a go. If you want to watch a solid alien movie starring Simon Pegg, I’d advise you to watch Paul instead.