HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Gangster, the Cop, the Devil, The
Brightburn
Satanic Panic
Claudine
Harpoon
Great Northfield Minnesota Raid, The
Dark Phoenix
No Mercy
Arctic
Fate of Lee Khan, The
El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie
Ladyworld
Rocketman
Kid Who Would Be King, The
Making Waves: The Art of Cinematic Sound
America America
Darkest Minds, The
Along Came Jones
Hummingbird Project, The
Under the Table You Must Go
Harry Birrell Presents Films of Love and War
Hanging Tree, The
Godzilla: King of the Monsters
Scooby-Doo! Camp Scare
Itsy Bitsy
Witchmaker, The
Prey, The
If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Belgium
Happy Death Day 2U
Full Moon High
Strange But True
Kamikaze 1989
Never Grow Old
Time of Your Life, The
Mountain Men, The
Epic
Best Before Death
John Wick Chapter 3: Parabellum
Isabelle
Non-Stop New York
   
 
Newest Articles
Peak 80s Schwarzenegger: The Running Man and Red Heat
Rock On: That'll Be the Day and Stardust on Blu-ray
Growing Up in Public: 7-63 Up on Blu-ray
Learn Your Craft: Legend of the Witches and Secret Rites on Blu-ray
70s Psycho-Thrillers! And Soon the Darkness and Fright on Blu-ray
Split: Stephen King and George A. Romero's The Dark Half on Blu-ray
Disney Post-Walt: Three Gamechangers
But Doctor, I Am Pagliacci: Tony Hancock's The Rebel and The Punch and Judy Man on Blu-ray
Once Upon a Time in Deadwood: Interview with Director Rene Perez
Shit-Eating Grim: Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom on Blu-ray
Stallone's 80s Action Alpha and Omega: Nighthawks and Lock Up
Python Prehistory: At Last the 1948 Show and Do Not Adjust Your Set on DVD
You Could Grow to Love This Place: Local Hero on Blu-ray
Anglo-American: Joseph Losey Blu-ray Double Bill - The Criminal and The Go-Between
Marvel's Least Loved and Most Loved: Fantastic 4 vs Avengers: Endgame
Battle of the Skeksis: The Dark Crystal Now and Then
American Madness: Sam Fuller's Shock Corridor and The Naked Kiss on Blu-ray
Flight of the Navigator and the 80s Futurekids
Trains and Training: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 13 on DVD
Holiday from Hell: In Bruges on Blu-ray
The Comedy Stylings of Kurt Russell: Used Cars and Captain Ron
Robot Rocked: The Avengers Cybernauts Trilogy on Blu-ray
Hammer's Bloodthirsty Bad Girls 1970: Lust for a Vampire and Countess Dracula
Hammer to Fall: Kiss Me Deadly on Blu-ray
Home of the Grave: The House That Dripped Blood and Asylum on Blu-ray
   
 
  Look of Love, The King Of SohoBuy this film here.
Year: 2013
Director: Michael Winterbottom
Stars: Steve Coogan, Imogen Poots, Anna Friel, Tamsin Egerton, Chris Addison, James Lance, Simon Bird, David Walliams, Shirley Henderson, Stephen Fry, Matt Lucas, Kieran O'Brien, Liam Boyle, Matthew Beard, Miles Jupp, Dara O'Briain, Emily Berrington
Genre: Biopic
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Paul Raymond (Steve Coogan) was a self made man who created a fortune out of both his pornography empire and his property business, making him eventually the richest man in Britain, but as the old cliché goes, all that money could not buy him happiness and it could not bring his daughter Debbie (Imogen Poots) back to life. She had died of a drugs overdose shortly after giving birth to her second child, and this hit Raymond extremely hard, as can be imagined, but now, drawing into reclusiveness, he thinks back on his life and what brought him to such incredible highs and hellish lows...

Director Michael Winterbottom and star Steve Coogan had teamed up for a biopic of sorts before in 24 Hour Party People, with the actor finding the persona of television and music impresario Tony Wilson fitting him like a glove. Yet on watching the pair's collaboration to reimagine the career and personal life of the self-styled King of Soho, you could look back on that earlier movie and see its success was because they were able to turn Wilson into one of Coogan's comedy characters, and the attempt to do the same with Raymond didn't suit the material at all. The millionaire had, after all, often appeared on television so it was not as if nobody knew what he was like.

And he was really very little like Coogan's impersonation of him, except it wasn't an impersonation, it was the star's patented suburban take on the foibles of Middle England crowbarred into an existence which was not best served by such an interpretation. We were, according to this, supposed to be laughing at Raymond and his impertinence for climbing the ladder of success from low rent end of the pier showman to the huge financial behemoth he became, and that was down to one reason: he made his fortune from sex. He supplied naked women in his clubs and on the pages of his magazines to those whose wives and girlfriends, assuming they had them, would not be able to have access to otherwise.

In this manner The Look of Love was very British in its take on sex, in that it was either considered absolutely hilarious or utterly miserable, so this film had the best of both worlds by combining the two: if it was hilarious right now, then rest assured it would be bloody miserable eventually. Naturally, this went hand in hand with the idea that any attempt at sophistication was inevitably ruined by the introduction of carnality to the mix. This was echoed in the pattern of the movie which dropped in on its subject's life to dramatise key moments, from his beginnings with his wife Jean (Anna Friel) as they forged ahead with their idea of staging revues featuring female nudity, to Paul's tries at getting a showbiz career for Debbie off the ground and failing miserably because she had no talent other than persuading her father to lavish cash on her, to establishing his porn baron status.

If Coogan was having trouble finding the truth of Raymond and resorting to caricature, then Poots bettered him with a far more authentic performance, making Debbie a person you could feel truly sorry for even as it seemed horribly inevitable that she would end her days like she did; everyone else appeared to be uncertain if they should be funny acting alongside this star, and Winterbottom backed him up with many supporting roles for comedians familiar from British television, again suggesting a poor approach to the material. Not that it should have been completely humourless, it's just that the humour they found wasn't particularly amusing, applying sitcom quips to situations that felt increasingly tone deaf as they went on. Tamsin Egerton offered a not bad Fiona Richmond, Chris Addison was boyishly sleazy under that beard as Raymond's print associate, and David Walliams had fun as the resident vicar, but the problem remained that this was endeavouring to make saucy frolics out of something rather sad and tawdry. Music by Antony Genn and Martin Slattery.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1220 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
Andrew Pragasam
  Rachel Franke
Enoch Sneed
Paul Shrimpton
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: