Monday, August 20, 2007
Stardust, Neil Gaiman’s 1999 adult fairy tale may have worked its magic on the written page, but it’s screen transformation
is as un-enchanted as can be. An over-baked mix of fantasy, action-adventure, and romance, the movie, despite it’s strong cast (Michelle Pfeiffer, Claire Danes, Charlie Cox, Sienna Miller, Peter O'Toole, Ricky Gervais) misfires from beginning to end. Director Matthew Vaughn seems to think he can bring the prickly feel of his own Layer Cake to this antithetical genre, but the whooshing camerawork and derivative musical cues only bog the film down under an ever obvious tone of smug and eye-winking irreverence. Eventually, the movie will be a classic cable-watched guilty pleasure, solely for the wack-jack Robert DeNiro scene-stealing turn as a closeted pirate named Captain Shakespeare. Our Man Bobby D hasn’t had this much fun (or been this flamboyantly hammy) since he wielded a baseball bat as Al Capone in Brian DePalma’s The Untouchables.