It could be said that writer and director Michael Winterbottom and star Steve Coogan have created a monster in the character of fashion mogul Sir Richard McCreadie. Except, it becomes clear, “Greedy” McCreadie is not a character that needed to be invented. He exists already: McCreadie is barely even a thinly disguised version of Philip Green. And, as far as this lurid portrait is concerned, he has no redeeming features whatsoever. This may well be an entirely accurate appraisal of the man’s character, but it doesn’t make for a particularly nuanced piece of cinema. That said, the brash, gung-ho approach makes sense with the showy, win-at-all-costs personality of the man, with his veneered killer smile and casual cruelty. What is less successful is the film’s scattergun assault on other issues – I am not sure that the plight of Syrian refugees, for example, invites the same broad satirical slicing as the grasping head of a retail empire. Still, the film – an account of the run up to Sir Richard’s lavish, Gladiator-themed 60th birthday celebrations on the Greek island of Mykonos, spliced together with flashbacks and interviews (with a bumbling biographer played by David Mitchell) – is as rambunctiously entertaining… Read full this story
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