I remember seeing the trailer for this film last year. It reminded me so much of actor Peter Sellers’ performance as the clueless Inspector Jacques Clouseau in the classic film, “The Pink Panther.” Alas, this film was no “Pink Panther.”
In a performance unlike any other we have seen from him, Johnny Depp brings the words “classic” and “sophisticated” a new meaning in “Mortdecai.”
There is only one man who has the power to juggle angry Russian mobsters, the British Secret Service (MI-5), his impossible wife and an international terrorist.
His name is Charlie Mortdecai and once you meet him you will learn how his fashionably good looks and special charm will win you over.
As a debonair art dealer and part-time rogue, he must travel the globe in a race to recover a stolen painting which is rumored to contain a long-lost code to a bank account that contains Nazi gold.
Mortdecai stars Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow, Paul Bettany, Ewan McGregor, Olivia Munn and Jeff Goldblum. David Koepp directs the film.
The only part that kept the film from failing entirely is the fact that Depp is having fun as Mortdecai. He is truly trying his hand at something different and has a ball with it.
Does this mean that Depp is only good at the dark and dramatic roles? I don’t think so.
Despite having an impressive supporting cast of A-list superstars, the performances are lacking at best. Bettany as Mortdecai’s thuggish manservant is probably one of the funniest roles in the movie.
Seeing Bettany give a stern and intimidating performance is just hysterical to me. He pulls it off, but it is a change of pace for him. I don’t think Paltrow portrays a posh wife character, which I am glad because she is really a better actress than that.
The same could be said about McGregor, who plays a Scotland Yard inspector who also harbors longing feelings for Mortdecai’s wife.
Lastly, another actor who has seen better roles, is Olivia Munn, who is very sexy as the seductive, nymphomaniac heiress, but is primarily used as eye candy.
Koepp is most famous for being a writer. He has written films such as “Jurassic Park,” “Spider-Man” and “War of the Worlds.”
His first mistake with this film was not writing the script. If he had written it, the film would have been immensely better.
As for directing, he truly has an eye for it, especially capturing all of the action scenes. But without the writing being solid, it is hard to notice.
As a whole, the movie focuses way too much on silly and sexual innuendos. After the first 10 times I saw a joke being made about Mortdecai’s mustache, I seriously just wanted to rip the thing off.
On the other hand, the mustache jokes are something unique and this role is unlike anything Depp has previously done.
Story by John Gruccio, Contributing writer