"No, the ultimate joke is on viewers who might scoff at David's foolishness while nursing similar anxieties about the possibility of finding fulfillment. Indeed, Brooks sneaks in a little poke at the crowd by opening the film with an overheard radio interview of the legendary critic Rex Reed, who complains about the laugh-out-loud mob mentality of a comedy-movie audience. Chuckle all you want, Brooks is saying—but that doesn't mean you’re too different from his protagonist. After just weeks on the road, David and Linda resolve to fix their new crisis (a lack of money) by begging for their old jobs back, and it works, though their salaries are slightly reduced. That's what amounts to a (relatively) happy ending for Brooks: a depressing return to the status quo."
David Sims at The Atlantic revisits Albert Brooks's Lost in America.