If you grade the worth of a film by simply answering the question: was I entertained? - then yes, this film works. You may call it slight (at less than 90 minutes long, how could you not), and perhaps not really about much of anything. Add that it contains several very loose plot conventions (Freeman has no cash, but yet buys some trinkets at a car wash), and one might consider this a B movie, or indie flick by some college film student. But there is a glorious tone here, and the mere presence of Freeman gives the film a certifiable heft.
After viewing the film I wondered if it would have held my interest if the main charactor had been played by a unknown, and the answer is probably, as long as the chemistry between the two central charactors remained intact, There is enough humor and hollywood insider stuff to make this film worth a view regardless of Freeman's presence (although from a strict grading point Freeman probably gives it a point to point and a half bump).
Many have said that it appeared that Freeman was enjoying himself in this role - well, isn't that the point of the charactor in the first place; a kind of burnt out movie star who realized that he has lost touch with the real world, so he re-enters it and sees the pulsing beat of humanity wherever he looks. He is almost Santa Claus like in his "roll with it" good humor, as when he gets the wipe off guys at the car wash to do a conga line, and then stand in rapture as they watch the end of The Yearling as it plays on the tiny car wash tv.
In the end, the film is kind of a "buddy film", except the message goes a bit deeper - keep on keeping on and find some joy in the everyday.
In his last speach, Freeman tells Paz that they have a pact to remember this day in their lives, for they will never see each other again; as Freeman, having recharged his life batteries, returns to the sequestered and surreal world of hollywood.