Mortdecai (2015)

mortdecai_2015_poster
Mortdecai (2015)
  • Time: 120 min
  • Genre: Action | Comedy
  • Director: David Koepp
  • Cast: Johnny Depp, Ewan McGregor, Gwyneth Paltrow, Paul Bettany, Jeff Goldblum

Storyline:

Juggling some angry Russians, the British Mi5, his impossibly leggy wife and an international terrorist, debonair art dealer and part time rogue Charlie Mortdecai must traverse the globe armed only with his good looks and special charm in a race to recover a stolen painting rumored to contain the code to a lost bank account filled with Nazi gold.

8 reviews

  • Charlie Mortdecai, played by Johnny Depp (Transcendence), a broke, debonair art dealer is hired by the MI5 to recover a stolen painting that could lead to lost Nazi gold. The curse of Depp continues once more with this God awful film, not since 2011 (Rango) has Depp made a successful film and Mortdecai could well be the worst of them all.

    Once upon a time, anything Depp touched turned to gold, but as of late not a single film has been deemed good or successful. Is it Depp himself or does the film just plain suck? With Mortdecai it’s both. After roughly five minutes of narration and character introductions, the accents become sickeningly irritating. The British accent is way over the top from Depp as well as the British cast, all barring Paul Bettany (Transcendence), who, in fairness doesn’t speak much. Everything is present way over-the-top, which just…

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  • Mortdecai- I can’t say I was disappointed just because my expectations were extremely low. These are the kinds of movies that make me wonder who the hell would actually buy the script and turn it into a feature film. This film is the most stupid, silly film I have seen in a year. I knew walking into the theater that this movie would be goofy, but I just hoped it would also be funny. I guess it was funny enough so I can’t say I wasted my time. With a terrible plot and worse dialogue, the only thing that makes this film funny is Johnny Depp.

    I wish Johnny Depp will actually be in a decent film one of these days. The last good film he was in was Public Enemies which was in 2009. That is six years since his last good film, how long will it be until he finds an actually good film to act in? Whatever the case may be Mortdecai was not the answer to his problem.

    I know this is in the slapstick comedy genre of film, but that doesn’t excuse the terrible plot or the dialogue. Watching this movie, I couldn’t help but think a twelve year old wrote the screenplay. What is even worse is a six year old could’ve followed the film and even guessed the “oh no” moments of it. Someone should’ve told the director that just because this is a goofy type of movie doesn’t mean it can’t have an interesting plot.

    Except for Johnny Depp, the acting in this film was below-average at best. They never really got into their characters and because of that, I could never really believe they were who they were and because of this, I could never really focus on the film. Johnny Depp was the only one that saved it. I am not saying he deserves an award for it, but at least I could tell he was giving his best effort and it definitely benefitted the movie. I still think this film should never have been made, I firmly believe no one could have played Charlie Mortdecai better than Johnny Depp.

    If you really want to see something funny, see if there are any other comedies out first. If you can’t find anything better, than Mortdecai will not be a terrible choice to see in theaters or on DVD.

    For more of my reviews, go to my website at reviewsbywest.com

  • Tony Barton

    Mortdecai is an action comedy starring Jonny Depp and directed by David Koepp, The movie opens in a Hong Kong Casino, during a meeting between Mortdecai (Jonny Depp) and a Gangster known as Fang (Junix Inocian). Art dealer Motdecai is there trying to sell a rare vase to Fang. The meeting doesn’t go to plan however, as Fang reminds Mortdecai of a transaction, in which Mortdecai sold Fang an item for £3000000, only the item was in fact worth £1000000.

    Fang decides to settle the score by removing one of Mortdecai’s fingers, but Mortdecai’s man servant, Jock (Paul Bettany), beats up Fangs, henchman before he can do it. Mortdecai and Jock are then forced to flee for their lives as a gun fight erupts.

    Mordecai arrives home and finds himself taking an ear bashing off his wife Johanna(Gwyneth Paltrow), who also finds that Mortdecai’s new moustache makes her feel sick, every time Mordecai kisses her, which leads to some rather funny scenes. A women named Bronwen (Norma Atallah) is shot in the back with an arrow whilst working on a painting. The culprit then climbs through the window and steals it, only to be knocked out by another thief. Inspector Martland (Ewan McGregor) visits Mordecai and tells him of the theft and informs him that his main suspect is a criminal named Emil Strago ( Jonny Pasvolsky). Martland asks Mordecai for his assistance in retrieving the painting. Mordecai and Jock agree to help on one understanding, they get 10% of the proceeds after the painting is sold to an American dealer named Milton Krampf (Jeff Goldblum).

    Whilst Mordecai and Jock are away, Johanna does some detective work of her own and discovers that the painting is far more valuable than first thought as it apparently contains codes on the back that lead to a large stash of Nazi gold. It’s fun and games all the way in this pacey action comedy, that sees Jonny Depp in fine form and well supported by Paul Bettany. The blend of action, comedy and a sprinkling of slap stick makes Mordecai one of those must see movies.

  • As we are in the midst of awards season for movies, there seems to be an expectation that every movie that is released at the moment has to be better than the last and by doing so we forget that movies also serve as entertainment. Whilst David Koepp’s Mortdecai may not win any Oscars, BAFTAs or Golden Globes, it is a very fun movie and I feel like I need to see a good fun one every once in a while.

    Charlie Mortdecai (Johnny Depp) is an aristocratic art dealer who has fallen on some financial hard times and is only days away from complete insolvency. After the murder of a painting restorer, he is enlisted by MI5 agent Inspector Martland (Ewan McGregor) to hunt down the killer. So with his trusty manservant Jock (Paul Bettany) in tow, they set off in search of the painting. Meanwhile, Charlie’s wife Johanna (Gwyneth Paltrow) begins her own investigation into the missing painting.

    One thing I think this movie suffers from is an overcomplicated story. There are parts where I felt as though it was tripping over plot points just to get to some laughs that occasionally fall flat. However, I did find that the characters were suitably well rounded enough to feel them as real people. The movie also takes a lot of time in its transitions to the parts of the world that it takes place. Every time we change city (or even a different part of the same city) we get an animated fly-over of the globe, which I felt worked once, but every time after that was just annoying.

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  • Sandcooler

    The first fifteen minutes of “Mortdecai” feels more like an SNL sketch than like an actual movie, it’s almost a perfect parody of Johnny Depp’s later career. Depp’s character is gratingly tiresome and it certainly feels like you’ve seen him play an eccentric, quirky bon-vivant with a questionable accent a couple of times too many. The constant narration that didn’t add anything useful wasn’t much help either. But then, very slowly, you do start to get into the “new” character he portrays here. Charlie Mortdecai clearly borrows heavily from his earlier parts and occasionally feels like an auto-pilot job, but the script is quite witty and Depp’s dry delivery still does the trick no matter how many movies he’s done this way. The plot isn’t very interesting, but it’s just there to play second fiddle to the wide range of entertaining characters. The best part of the movie though is just how a gentleman that appears to be from the Victorian era lives in the 21th century with no explanation whatsoever: seeing him act the way he does in a world that stopped taking this nonsense a long time ago is stupefying, and thus endlessly fascinating. Particularly his scene with the garage owner (Paul Whitehouse from “The Fast Show”!) is the absolute highlight of the movie because of how perplexing the anachronism is. “Mordecai” may have the telltale signs of a bomb, but surprisingly it’s a highly entertaining movie.

    • Tony Barton

      That’s what makes showbiz so interesting. If everyone liked the same films, actors, bands etc….it would be a boring existence?

  • Before being badly brought to life onscreen in the sometimes amusing Mortdecai, the character of Lord Charlie Mortdecai was the mustachioed centerpiece of a series of fairly popular novels by Kyril Bonfiglioli. The books chronicled the adventurous capers of the amoral snob and his ever faithful and libidinous manservant, Jock Strapp. Their relationship owed more than a passing nod to P.G. Wodehouse’s Wooster and Jeeves, and Mortdecai was a spiritual descendant of E.W. Hornung’s gentleman thief Raffles (a role essayed by the debonair Ronald Colman and David Niven in various film versions).

    Mortdecai is a dandy of the highest order, completely self-serving, and a sophisticate who often admired the talents of the shady characters he encountered. Depp, drawing inspiration from Peter Sellers and Paul Whitehouse (appearing in the film as an art-smuggling mechanic), smothers the character with a barrage of tics and mannerisms, resulting in a performance that delights as much as it frustrates. Based on the first installment in the Mortdecai series, Don’t Point That Thing at Me, the film finds Mortdecai embroiled in a search for a stolen painting purported to contain a code that could lead to Nazi treasure. Mortdecai and Jock trot the globe – popping up in Los Angeles, Hong Kong, and Moscow – whilst MI5 agent Alistair Martland (Ewan McGregor) tends after Johanna (Gwyneth Paltrow), his longtime unrequited love and Mortecai’s blithely exasperated wife.

    Director David Koepp maintains a brisk space, and there is a lot of energy coursing through the film. At the time of their creation, Mortdecai and Jock were already a throwback to the groovy baby vibe of the Swinging Sixties. Koepp and screenwriter Eric Aronson plop them in present times but, unlike Austin Powers – who elicited laughs from the conflict between past and present attitudes – the characters are drained of the very politically incorrect behaviour that may have prevented them from being mere caricatures.

    Depp is obviously enjoying himself and he can be fun to watch, but his predilection for indulging in the eccentricities isolates him from those around him. Mortdecai, much like television’s Columbo, was less about the plot than its digressions – the way character behaves under certain circumstances, or their interactions with supporting players who existed to dole out information whilst providing local colour. There are plenty of tangents in Mortdecai but because Depp, in his quest to create another oddball figure, doesn’t play well with others, the scenes come off as flat, hollow, and pointless.

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  • There’s an alarming trend of steady decline in quality of Johnny Deep’s movies. He performs to his strength as quirky characters, but his recent movies haven’t been optimal even with the help of talented cast. Mortdecai is probably the worst of the bunch, an insipid action comedy that fails in creating sophisticated humor, needlessly complicated and above all, dangerously boring.

    Mortdecai (Johnny Deep) is a shady art dealer who allegedly dabbles on illegal activities. After several mishandled dealings he suffers quite a significant loss, which pushes him near the brink of bankruptcy. At the same time an art heist occurs, Mortdecai is serendipitously involved in the case. He uses this chance to slither a profit out of the situation. The premise is set for intellect crime with a touch of comedy, but it accomplishes neither as Mortdecai is too placid to be taken seriously and too dull to be amusing.

    The movie also brings a strong line-up of actors, such as Paul Bettany, Ewan McGregor and Gwyneth Paltrow. However, the material makes their characters one dimensional. Script often invests too much on particular scenes or rehearses the same joke far too many times, while skimming on development of the case. It makes the pacing plods on some areas and leaves plot holes on the rest.

    Dialogues are intricate, yet these suave words might not work and may even come off as shallow. It relies heavily on vulgar tone, but its funnier moments are from slapstick, much thanks to Deep and Bettany. Deep’s staple appeal is from his exaggerated motion, he does try to personify Mortdecai but the character itself is too corny and lacking charisma. Paul Bettany is a flexible actor, bulk of his previous characters consist of brooding men, but he looks comfortable in a more relaxed persona even moonlighting as comedy relief.

    It’s hard to recommend Mortdecai, the movie, just like the character, is not as charming and clever as it thinks it is. Audience can probably get a few laughs if they set their expectation really low, but that shouldn’t happen with such assembly of capable stars.

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