Thursday, 14 August 2014

Welcome to New York

The true story of a New York entrepreneur whose sexual appetite eventually leads to his downfall, wait a minute… no, it’s not directed by Martin Scorsese and it’s not the Wolf of Wall Street. You do feel sorry for this film, coming up against something so similar and with so much more credit. I’m not saying this is automatically bad, but it’s main competitor had Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill and at the helm was one of the greatest directors of the last fifty years, in fact possibly of all time.
Anyway, as similar as it is this is not the Wolf of Wall Street. So we can’t spend this revue simply stating how brilliant Martin Scorsese is. Also because there is a considerable gap between the two film, and the Wolf of Wall street is no longer in cinemas, I won’t compare the two films against each other as if they’re actually competing because that just isn’t fair.
Like I said before, the film is based on a true story. It follows the scandal involving Monetary Fund President Dominique Strauss-Kahn and his arrest for sexual assault. Obviously the names have been changed, the lead character is now called Devereaux but the film is already facing self-censorship by the French Government, lawsuits from those portrayed in the film, and reviews express complete disgust. Also, I don’t mean to spoil anything but in this adaptation he is guilty. There’s no hint of ambiguity or difference of opinion, it’s 100% fact that he committed the crimes that he is charged with.
Also it certainly draws your attention to the fact that sex is a large part of this film early on with quite an… interesting shall we say, montage. Let me say then, although I previously promised not to compare this to the Wolf of Wall Street, if you thought that was outrageous the prepare for something in a completely different league with this. It’s main man Gerard Depardieu gives a larger than life performance. It definitely is the jewel of this otherwise chaotic film.
The plot doesn’t feel as clear and there doesn’t appear to be any intelligent thought in it really. I mean, this is an issue that people will have varied feelings about, whether it’s specifically about the case on which the film is based on or the bigger picture behind this. Instead though it decides not to trust the viewer’s intelligence and instead tells them exactly what to think. I’m not saying that there’s nothing to condemn when it comes to sexual assault (I could get some very angry comments if I did). But I am going to go back to Martin Scorsese to prove my point, Goodfellas and Wolf of Wall Street were based on proven crimes but they still allow the viewer to decide if the ending is good. These people are now living average and normal but morally right lives, is that a good thing. You decide. Welcome to New York portrays a crime that was never proven, and also tells us what to think anyway.
Another thing, this film really feels like it wanted to cause controversy. It went into cinemas looking for a fight, and now it’s found it in the form of lawsuits and censorship. I really don’t know what to make of it, I am completely stumped as to what to do. It’s rowdy and raunchy with no real sense of direction or proven historical accuracy. I need help, if anyone has seen this film and can think of a verdict of some sort please comment, and the best argument will be our verdict.

Result: Um, do you know, we don’t/10 

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