Culver City Observer -

MOVIE REVIEW - One More Time

 

April 14, 2016



Seems appropriate to go from Christopher Walken voicing King Louie to Christopher Walken being, well, Christopher Walken, in the charming comedy ONE MORE TIME.

Paul Lombard was a star back in the day. Crooning a-la Sinatra he had hit after hit after hit. But as happens with time, the fans disappear. Not content to sit back and watch time pass him by, Paul spends his night secretly updating his Wikipedia page with more glowing adjectives than stars in the heavens. Ever the egotist, rationalizing all that he does as being for his family, Paul is hot to make a comeback. He has a new song. One he’s written. He’s just not getting the familial love and support he thinks he should have. His daughter Jude, an aspiring singer-songwriter -punk rocker who can’t get out of her own way or Paul’s shadow can’t make it singing the occasional jingle and facing eviction, moves back home with Paul and his wife ____ in the Hamptons. Unfortunately, Jude has always been deemed the black sheep of the family thanks to her free-spirited lifestyle and various addictions, something she blames on her father. On the flip side of the sibling coin is little sister Corrine aka Little Miss Goody Two Shoes. A champion brown-noser, Corrine’s big problem is that she feels ignored by Paul as he says she has no talent. She, of course, thinks she does. Adding a little more dysfunction to the familial mix is the fact that Corrine is married to Jude’s ex-boyfriend Tim.

As Paul’s excitement builds on learning not only is his new song going to be released as a single to see where it charts, he’s the opening act for the Flaming Lips, something Jude belittles at every opportunity, going so far as to call him a “dancing monkey”, a laughing stock at the gig. Unapologetic, Paul retorts with an “I know. You think I don’t know that? Who cares?” Priceless in story. Platinum when delivered by Walken.

Many forget that Walken is a Broadway singer and dancer but he sure does remind all in ONE MORE TIME. Much akin to Al Pacino’s recent turn in “Danny Collins”, in a perfect role that blends Walken-ese eccentricities with the heart of family, Walken shines as Paul Lombard. This is deadpan comedic Walken-ese at its best.

A perfect foil to Walken is Amber Heard who makes us feel the rapier frustrated love of a daughter for dad. And while not a big fan of her singing, she held her own. Kelli Garner is snooty sibling perfection as Corrine while Hamish Linklater is puppy dog charming as Tim. Oliver Platt brings his own level of enjoyment to the mix as Paul’s lawyer and manager, Alan.

Written and directed by Robert Edwards, is charm personified. The family dysfunction and sibling jealousy, while ultimately rallying together for Paul when he gets himself in a sticky situation is so authentic, so resonant and beautifully unfolds. The sibling barbs between Jude and Corrine are terrific and again, resonant to every sibling watching. A welcoming and familiar lyric flow embodies the family dynamic, especially in scenes where all are together.

Lensing is beautiful thanks to cinematographer Anne Etheridge. The digital polish is perfect as a metaphoric touch to the veneer Paul wants to put on his life. Scott Kuzio’s production design is well done, nicely apportioned.

The music is simply marvelous, particularly the songs for Walken. And make sure you stay through the credits as the end titles are their own little story utilizing play on words of album titles and album cover homages, adding a lovely kitsch touch

 

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