Friday, September 12, 2008

Me and Orson Welles

"You know what I see when I look in your eyes...I see images of magnificence"

Written by: Holly Gent Palmo
Directed by: Richard Linklater
Starring: Zac Efron, Christian McKay, Claire Danes

My rating: 8/10

OK, I am totally weak for films that are fictional but based around true events. I love that. Films that could very well be true, but aren't, necessarily. Me and Orson Welles is a wonderful story of a young boy whose only acting experience is in high school musicals (ha! See what I did there) who manages to get a small part in Orson Welles 1937 production of Julius Caesar. The film follows the volatile relationship between Orson and his company. He is a madman, a selfish, arrogant user and an absolute genius. He knows how the politics of showbusiness and he knows people, and how to play them. However, for all his antics, he is powerfully charismatic and it seems generally accepted that he is a genius.

Christian McKay's performance here as Orson Welles is wonderfully broad as he goes through every one of Orson Welles personas with equal relish. He is snappy and arrogant but at the same time warm enough to earn some affection so when he lets a character down, you feel just as played yourself. The rest of the cast were great too. Zac Efron has been getting a lot of flack for being dull, but I personally thought he was solid and likeable, with just enough of a sparkle in his eye and just enough skill to keep it there after his inevitable fall from grace.

Overall this film has a charming, if predictable, story, a very strong cast and most importantly a sweet disposition that left me smiling for a good half hour after the credits rolled.

- Charlene Lydon 6/10/08

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