Boogie Woogie (Review)

BOOGIE WOOGIE
(4/23/10; Comedy)
Gillian Anderson, Alan Cumming, Heather Graham, Danny Huston, Christopher Lee, Joanna Lumley, Charlotte Rampling, Amanda Seyfried, Stellan Skarsgård, Jamie Winstone
SCR: Danny Moynihan, based on his novel
DIR: Duncan Ward
MPAA: R for strong sexual content, graphic nudity, language throughout and some drug use.
1 hour 31 mins

Who knew the modern art world was so swingin’? This satire finds an ensemble of dealers, collectors, artists and artistes as they circle, scheme, outplay, outmaneuver, and screw each other (literally and figuratively).

The cast is impressive and occasionally an inspired moment rises from the banality in this art world version of Robert Altman’s Pret-a-Porter (1994). Cummings’ tale is about the pathos of a failed endeavor; Graham is an ambitious assistant willing to do anything to succeed; Huston is the viperous dealer from another era and Skarsgård his lecherous client with a few angles of his own.

This veers from wicked commentary to vapid sex drama and, while individual elements are luridly engaging (does everyone in this movie have an obsession with boobs?), there is nothing to flesh it out. Jamie Winstone, who plays the spiky-haired lesbian video artist Elaine, is the daughter of Ray Winstone. (IFC)

— DENNIS WILLIS

Author: Dennis Willis

Dennis Willis is an award-winning producer, TV host, producer, director, editor (he preferred Avid until a torrid affair with Adobe Premiere, and the rest is history), author and film critic (print and radio). Dennis produced and hosted the TV programs Reel Life, FilmTrip, Soundwaves (1983-2008) and produces the annual Soundwaves Xmas program. He is currently the film critic on KGO Radio in San Francisco, and a member of both the San Francisco Film Critics Circle and the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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