American Fable is ambitious, maybe too much so sometimes, but there's an intense pleasure in the boldness of the film's style.
"High Concept" is a Hollywood expression for a movie story idea that can be summarized in one sentence, such as "Detroit street cop goes to Beverly Hills." The phrase is a little misleading, since such movies are almost always low in the ambition of their conception and sometimes so shortsighted that they cannot see the flaws in their own formulas.
Take "Someone To Watch Over Me" as an example. The story of this movie can be summarized in this sentence: "Detective from working-class background falls in love with society beauty." If you have read that sentence and are a reasonably experienced moviegoer, is there anything I can add that would surprise you?
Would you, for example, be surprised to find that the beauty needs a police bodyguard because her life is in danger after she has witnessed a murder? Would you be amazed to learn that the cop assigned to the night shift is young and handsome? That the murderer is vile and sadistic? That the beauty's boyfriend is rich but distant? That the cop's wife is feisty and determined? That the cop's boss threatens to fire him for screwing around with this dame? That the movie's set decorator has supplied the society woman with a Manhattan apartment so lavish that even Donald Trump would need roller skates?
You would not, I suspect, be very surprised. That's the problem with High Concept movies. Once you master the concept, there's nothing left for the movie - except, of course, for the obligatory sequence of the cop tracking the killer through the darkened apartment, which is the high-rise equivalent of the chase scene. Movies like this are on automatic pilot. Unless we are very young, very naive or hopelessly lusting after one of the stars, there is little to interest us aside from interior decorating hints.