Movie Review by Neils Hesse
Starring: Richard Gere, Alfred Molina, Marcia Gay Harden, Hope Davis, Julie Delpy
Director: Lasse Hallström
What is it about Hollywood and dominos? You line them up and then they all get knocked out by the first one in the line! Scorsese set it up with THE AVIATOR which had DiCaprio brilliantly playing the infamous Howard Hughes and now we have Gere playing a man who in many ways wanted to be Hughes!
1970s America, a struggling author, a notoriously secluded billionaire and bang the autobiography to squash all autobiographies takes seed. Advances of hundreds of thousands of dollars are handed over and off goes the suspiciously lucky author with exclusive rights to write the whirlwind tale of Howard’s life. Amidst mountains of doubt Clifford Irving (Gere), the author, manages to convince even the extremely sceptical Life magazine editors into accepting his work as the genuine article! But just as success seems to be looming on the horizon, a heady mix of paranoia, public scrutiny and Hughes himself step into the foray with devastating consequences.
Gere acquits himself admirably here, charming yet cunning, but ultimately he doesn’t quite bring out the tenacity he managed to show in films like INTERNAL AFFAIRS or PRIMAL FEAR. Molina’s supporting portrayal of the best friend who’s initially way out of his depth but eventually proves to be the only one with enough sense to stick to his morals provides a stand out performance here.
A pleasing mix of light comedy and drama coupled with a factually intriguing story that makes for an entertaining piece of cinema!