A beautiful, wealthy young party girl drops out of Radcliffe in 1965 and heads to New York to become Holly Golightly. When she meets a hungry young artist named Andy Warhol, he promises to make her the star she always wanted to be. And like a super nova she explodes on the New York scene only to find herself slowly lose grip on reality... Written by
Evocative But Frustratingly Elliptical Look at Andy Warhol's Factory and the Sad Party Girl in the Middle
For the concerted effort Sienna Miller puts into her searing portrayal of Warhol protégé and underground celebrity Edie Sedgwick, it would have been rewarding to experience a film that matches her unbridled dramatic impact. Unfortunately, director George Hickenlooper, primarily a documentary filmmaker, seems more focused on eye-catching cinematic techniques - a deliberately artsy mix of overtly dramatic images, grainy film stock and slow-motion photography - than honest character development in this highly fictionalized 2007 account of her brief life. The result feels energetic but ultimately rather cursory in the way he depicts the Manhattan party scene in the mid-1960's, in particular, the Factory, where Warhol let his coterie of drug-addicted fame-seekers gather to make virtually unwatchable films that reflect their constant state of ennui.
With her big raccoon eyes, pre-punk hairdo and flashing smile, Miller bears such a striking resemblance to the real-life Sedgwick that she carries much of the film by the sheer will of her character's Holly Golightly-like sense of exalted self-worth. But like Holly, Sedgwick lacked talent to sustain a film career, and the script leaves Miller to her own devices in connecting us with her character's tormented psyche amid her escalating drug use. On the upside, Guy Pearce accurately captures the discomfiting public image of Warhol down to the familiar narcissistic indifference and manipulative shyness, but his character gradually recedes into the background. At first, Hayden Christensen comes across as amateurish and unintentionally amusing as a Bob Dylan doppelganger, especially since he makes a feeble attempt at capturing the singer's recognizable speech cadences. Just as he manages to transcend the awkwardness of the character's intrusion into the story, he also disappears making his impact in Sedgwick's life feel rather fleeting.
Even though the cryptic screenplay by Captain Mauzner, Aaron Richard Golub and Simon Monjack conveniently paints Warhol and the faux-Dylan as polarizing figures pulling at Sedgwick's soul, the story really comes down to her own inner demons. The problem is that she remains oddly elliptical throughout, and Hickenlooper seems satisfied with leaving us with an impressionistic view of a person who barely warrants our attention forty years later. Among the supporting players, there are quite a familiar faces - Ileana Douglas as Vogue editor Diana Vreeland, Jimmy Fallon as Sedgwick's confidante Chuck Wein, Tara Summers as fellow Warhol protégé Brigid Berlin, Mena Suvari as Brigid's sister Richie, Edward Herrmann as the family attorney, Mary Kate Olsen as a partygoer. However, none of them are given any opportunity to shine.
26 of 36 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?