When petty thief Cosimo is given the plan for the perfect heist from a lifer in prison - the kind of job you dream about - he has to get out of jail, fast. But with Cosimo stuck in the ... See full summary »
William H. Macy
On the day of the Republican National Convention, radio show host Joe Pace joins the rallies, protests, delegates and citizens of NYC. Broadcasting his last show live, on-the-air, he goes on a one man march for free speech.
Al Fountain, a middle-aged electrical engineer, is on the verge of a mid-life crisis, when he decides to take his time coming home from a business trip, rents a car, and heads out looking ... See full summary »
Two untalented singers are mistaken for a pair of major league safe crackers in Providence, Rhode Island. The two are pressed into service by the local hoodlums and quickly find themselves ... See full summary »
It's the 1930's. American sisters Eugenia Crocker and Nesta Pett are extremely wealthy and extremely competitive, with each disliking the other. Their latest quest of oneupsmanship has Nesta trying to marry off her niece by marriage, poetess turned crime novelist Ann Chester, to Lord Reginald Wisbeach, so that there will royalty in the family. This move is against Ann's wishes as she doesn't love the stuffy Lord. Meanwhile, Eugenia, now living in London, is trying to buy a royal title. Eugenia's current quest and others like it are always hindered by the notoriety of her stepson, James Crocker - better known as Piccadilly Jim, for the newspaper gossip column he used to write and the job from which he got fired - who is known as a womanizer, brawler, gambler and drunk. Jim is thinking about becoming more respectable when he meets and falls in love at first sight with a beautiful American visiting London. That woman is Ann, who hates what she knows of Jim, not only for that notoriety, ... Written by
Actors tend to place their trust in directors, even old stalwarts such as Mr Palmer, Ms Blethyn and Mr Wilkinson. Once the point has been missed by the producers/director, although in this case I don't think the point was ever sighted, the production must run its collision course with disaster, and not even such fine actors as were employed to give it life, could save Piccadilly Jim .
PG Wodehouse was a successful writer who knew the value of the suspension of disbelief, and was able to deliver the theatrical creation of a world which, although highly unlikely, with a cleverly constructed set of plausibilities, would, and did, pass as the truth.
Theatre has many natural enemies. Because it is not the truth, but the appearance of truth, theatre has many tricks and falsehoods in its infrastructure, and these are all susceptible to betrayal in drama, but in comedy they are especially vulnerable. The absolute death sentence on comedy, is to "mug" (pull faces) to attempt to be funny, or to overstate a quirk or characteristic.
In Piccadilly Jim, the director breaks all the rules of good comedy by allowing, not only "mugging," and (keep it in) play funny work, but a whole swatch of clashes to occur. Modern dress, modern language, caricature rather than character, a mysterious failure at irregular intervals to use film language, and the erratic use of tempo, which often stifles its own dialogue.
Many a great opera singer has come unstuck via the technicalities of a so called simple folk song. Perhaps this film came likewise unstuck, by its creators missing the hidden vortex within the supposed simplicity of the original story.
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