RANDOM ACTS OF VIOLENCE is an ultra low budget thriller/black comedy about Malcolm - a New Yorker who gets tired of how gentrified, tepid and antiseptic it's all become. So he decides to ... See full summary »
Sidney Young is a disillusioned intellectual who both adores and despises the world of celebrity, fame and glamor. His alternative magazine, "Post Modern Review", pokes fun at the media obsessed stars and bucks trends, and so when Young is offered a job at the diametrically opposed conservative New York based "Sharps" magazine it's something of a shock! It seems "Sharps" editor Clayton Harding is amused by Young's disruption of a post-BAFTA party with a pig posing as Babe. Thus begins Sidney's descent into success - his gradual move from derided outsider to confidante of starlet Sophie Maes. Initially helping him out at Sharps is colleague Alison Olsen, who has her own secret. Wither their friendship? Written by
This is not a movie you can think about, nor analyse too much. In fact if you think about it, you start thinking about the bad things which are many. But if you don't think too hard, it's actually quite enjoyable. Simon Pegg is the central character, a brash tasteless English reporter who somehow finds himself on the payroll of a plush New York magazine. His questionable journalistic methods spark dislike and controversy at every turn. He develops a love-hate relationship with a colleague, Kirsten Dunst who is great at playing the soulful, unfulfilled woman. She is cast in contrast to Megan Fox, a neurotic rising starlet. Personally I can understand why our hero is able to resist Megan Fox's obvious charms, and falls for Kirsten instead. We know that Kirsten has her demons, but this seems to strengthen her performances. Having said that, her role here is not terribly demanding.
The movie also features cameos by Jeff Bridges in a rather fetching wig, a cynically manipulative Gillian Anderson, and nice Bill Paterson as Simon's philosopher dad. The wonderful Miriam Margolyes is criminally under-employed. The humour is generated by Pegg's almost wilfully English crassness - offset against the glamour and sophistication of New York's glitterati. After a romantic disappointment, our hero takes a couple of left turns and ends up on the moral low ground instead of the high ground. Though now highly successful, he knows he has sold out. Only an unseemly brawl at an award ceremony, involving his mother's ring, can set him back on the path of righteousness and true love.
Well, it's predictable and unconvincing in equal measure, but we seem to buy into the typical Pegg story the inept loser who becomes some kind of local hero, through a series of bizarre events. In fact Pegg is one of a pantheon of British actors who excel at this sort of archetypal storyline (Steve Coogan, Rowan Atkinson). He did it superbly in "Shaun of the Dead", less well in "Hot Fuzz". I liked "Run fatboy run" and I'm going to put this one on a level below that one, because the humour is so fitful and the ending so poor.
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