Alfie

Crimes

  • Filling cinemas with yet another pointless remake

  • Illustrating through example why it's almost never a good idea to have a character talk directly to the camera, especially for a big chunk of the film

  • Blaming its commercial failure on the conservative cultural climate of the George W. Bush years, not on its all-around crappiness.

Defender
Director Charles Shyer and his co-writer/co-producer Elaine Pope

Tone Of Commentary
Fawning, reverent, and basking in unadulterated self-love. "We're going to kind of maybe concentrate a bit primarily on story, character development, and gossip," Shyer says early on, promising a level of foppish ribaldry that he and Pope never begin to fulfill. They do discuss story and character development, but offer no gossip, unless their undying respect and affection for everyone who worked on the film somehow qualifies as irresistible dish.

What Went Wrong
Nothing, apparently, though Shyer concedes that the movie underperformed in the States, an unfathomable fluke he attributes to bad timing.

Comments On The Cast
Supporting player Jane Krakowski was delighted that the filmmakers found a way to emphasize her posterior. "It is pleasing to the eye," Pope concedes dispassionately. A rare critical note is struck when Shyer admits that although he loved Omar Epps, he "didn't love" Epps' shaved head. Pope responds that he is nevertheless "a handsome man." As for Nia Long, Shyer mutters, "She sure is lovely. God dang!" like a smitten schoolboy. "I'm the president of the Jude Law fan club," Shyer later enthuses about his star, prompting Pope to claim that she too is the president of the Jude Law fan club. Or at least its vice president.

Inevitable Dash Of Pretension
Shyer insists that he gave Law's character a "Beat Generation" thing to make him more resonant. Shyer and Pope also devote ample time to discussing the character's emotional arc.

Commentary In A Nutshell
After chastising himself for his ruthless candor, Shyer admits that a scene in which Law gets an erection around a homely male doctor is the only thing in the film "that doesn't ring 100 percent true to me."

Filed Under: DVD

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