As with many Charlie Kaufman’s scripts, Adaptation. is almost too clever for its own good, loaded with self-reflexivity, metatextuality, and self-awareness. It works by virtue of also being endearing and humane, something lacking in his most recent work, the stop-motion animation Anomalisa. The film is aided by a stellar cast, featuring not one but two Nicolas Cages in a career highlight; as well as Spike Jonze’s low-key, simplistic direction. A smart decision given that the complexity of Kaufman’s screenwriting calls for such a style simply to be able to tell the story clearly. The best of the films the two did together.