THE PLOT THUS FAR
A sumptuous dramatic comedy set in late 19th Century France, during the Belle Epoque, a period of social and cultural excess in European upper classes which ended only as the First World War erupted.
WHAT WE THOUGHT
“Cheri” is a film that looks at aging and responsibility. That’s not to say it’s a boring film that wants maturity above all. But, it treats the costume drama with a sense of modern feminism. Pfeiffer and others are allowed to be older and sexy. But, the true meat of the film comes when Pfeiffer has to put her ego aside and help others. While it’s lesser Frears, it’s enough to warrant a viewing.
What I appreciated about the film was the odd casting. Rupert Friend fits the mold of recent young Britain getting into these period pieces. But, Michelle Pfeiffer and Kathy Bates were inspired choices to tweak what could’ve been boring for the American viewing contingent. Still, it’s a movie about an older whore sending her kid to a slightly less old whore to learn how to romance and bone ladies. While that might be a crude summation, I don’t like to beat around the bush. Think of it almost as a feminine counterpoint to “Alfie”. I say that assuming that the younger readers even remember Alfie. That being the Caine original or terrible remake with Jude Law. Our readership has really skewed young in recent years.
The DVD comes with deleted scenes and a look at the making of the film. The A/V Quality is pretty standard for a costume drama. Still, I would’ve loved to have seen Darius Khondji’s beautiful cinematography in High Definition. Even then, it might not be enough to get the average AV reader to give a damn. Still, I recommend it for a rental.
RELEASE DATE: 10/20/09