Last Updated on Wednesday, 21 January 2015 16:33
Opening January 22, 2015
Directed by: David Koepp
Writing credits: Eric Aronson, Kyril Bonfiglioli
Cast: Johnny Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow, Paul Bettany, Ewan McGregor, Olivia Munn, Jonny Pasvolsky, Jeff Goldblum
The Duke of Mortdecai (Depp), a man of many talents, is in a bit of a predicament demanding an immediate infusion of “moola”. His manservant Jock (Bettany) is ever watchful and to the rescue. His wife Johanna (Paltrowi) is brainy, beautiful, and ever resourceful; Charlie’s crazy about her. But, enough to part with the symbol of his Mortdecai birthright? When a respected art restorer is killed and a Goya stolen, Inspector Martland (McGregor) of MI5 takes command. Before long police are at the estate door – Charlie has a reputation, you see. Staying ahead of the pack – a wicked collector, cunning Russians, retribution-seeking Chinese gangsters, a stinking-rich American (Goldblum), and an international terrorist (Pasvolsky) – takes wit, and determination. And Mortdecai desperately needs the number rumored to be on the painting’s backside, and beaucoup luck.
David Koepp directs this zany, good-fun action-packed comedy. Portraying a finicky, yet charming aristocrat, Depp’s eyes twinkle devilishly when delivering one-liners oozing with innuendos. Paltrow, cool, calm, and controlled, nicely counters, while Bettany’s delivery is supple. Also worth relishing, are the animated graphics that lead us clearly from one intercontinental city to another. Matching the globe-hopping pace is impish music by Mark Ronson and Geoff Zanelli. With high production values – Florian Hoffmeister camera, and Derek Ambrosi and Jill Savitt editing – the madcap plot invites us to simply sit back and enjoy. Perhaps we should all grow mustaches and see where it leads.