For Your Consideration
The law of diminishing returns finally hits Christopher Guest and the team who have worked together since This Is Spinal Tap reconfigured the rockumentary back in 1984. Encouraged by the success of that film, which, despite being directed by Rob Reiner, contained much material scripted and developed by him, Guest went on to write and direct, among other things, the enjoyably silly, if frequently undernourished, comedies, Waiting For Guffman, Best in Show and A Mighty Wind.
With For Your Consideration Guest returns, thematically at least, to his debut feature, the equally ill thought out The Big Picture, in which a promising young film student (Kevin Bacon) suffered the iniquities of Hollywood. Here it is a bunch of actors and the humiliations are heightened because it is the lead up to Oscar season.
Despite some good work from Guest regulars Catherine O’Hara, Harry Shearer, Fred Willard, Eugene Levy and many other very recognisable faces this is a dispiriting watch. Satirising media hysteria and the effect it has on fragile egos is one thing, but, as usual, Guest doesn’t want to get his hands too dirty just in case he can’t get his next film funded, so there is more wish and wash than venom in this poison pen letter. Worst of all there’s an awful cameo from Ricky Gervais that will have you begging for his passport to be revoked so he can stay in the UK and do what he does best.
General release from Fri 9 Feb.