19 May 2013 8:04 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Spirited, highly amusing and endearingly shambolic, James Toback’s “Seduced and Abandoned” seeks to represent an “uncategorizable” work about film, money, Cannes and death, roughly in that order. In other words, it’s basically a documentary that tracks the writer-helmer himself and co-conspirator Alec Baldwin as they schlep around the 2012 Cannes Film Festival and beyond, trying to hustle up coin for a loose remake of “Last Tango in Paris,” and meeting other filmmakers, financiers, studio execs, and stars along the way. Ultimately, the pic offers a timely, melancholy-tinged tribute to those fighting quixotically to make enduring, ambitious art rather than revenue for revenue’s sake.

Already acquired by HBO for North American broadcast, the pic could have dainty niche-theatrical legs offshore similar to those of “Side by Side.” Where Chris Kenneally’s recent docu about the digital-vs.-film debate was anchored by Keanu Reeves, “Seduced and Abandoned” has two charismatic frontmen in Toback and Baldwin, »

- Leslie Felperin

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