Boris Arkadin is a horror film maker. His pregnant wife was brutally murdered by a Manson-like gang of hippy psychopaths during the 1960s. He becomes a virtual recluse - until years later ... See full summary »
Throughout the film, there are several occasions when modern UPVC windows are visible - most clearly when the projector is stolen from the school, and in the accountant's office before he gets arrested. See more »
A dealer is really just someone who buys more dope than he can smoke. And I have to say, I'm ashamed, I tried to smoke it all. There was just too fuckin' much of it.
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The credits appear over a super slow motion shot of Howard Marks (Rhys Ifans) lighting and taking a toke from a joint. See more »
I think I've seen enough films glamourising the life of drug dealers on a large scale. Yes, I understand it can be a harmless recreational activity... but for some families the effects of addiction and the consequences afterwards can be absolutely devastating. Not to mention, the illegal acts the users partake in to AFFORD this stuff. So seeing Rhys Ifans and his wife and three daughters have a tearful reunion towards the end of his well-deserved stint in prison (though, I think the movie disagrees) in the final reel did not cause me to shed a tear. Rather, it made me reflect on all the mothers and fathers that would never see their children again... as a result of this idiot's life choices. He gets to go home with his girls. Shame a lot of those who were foolish enough to make him a multi-millionaire aren't so lucky.
Aside from the dubious moral ground this plot finds itself on, there are a multitude of other flaws too. Like: Ifans never visibly aging, even though the movie spans at least 30 years. Paper-thin characters, who are more comedy props than living, breathing individuals. Especially the females. Speaking of which, Chloe Sevigny's role... despite being billed second, she does NOTHING, and as a result, leaves no impression. The use of archive footage which Ifans & Co are inserted into... it occasionally works, but is more clumsy than anything. We're not talking Forrest Gump standard special effects here.
The most serious problem of all here though, is that the life of this supposed 'multi national drug smuggler' is rather boring. The excerpts from his life we see here, from his time in Oxford as a student, to meeting the IRA and setting up his worldwide narcotics empire are handled in the most dull way possible and as a result fail to engage the viewer. Mr Nice as played by Ifans is not very likable in the first place, and surrounding him with a one-note supporting cast of potheads and inept police just compounds the issue that there's no-one to care about here.
And when it gets all maudlin, as Ifans is 'turned in' by those he thought he could trust, We are presumably meant to feel sorry for this long haired loser. Not a chance. His last line proves he didn't learn a thing from his time inside, and his early release looks like a serious error. As did this entire production. Mr Nice? Mr ZZZ more like... 4/10
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