Projections - Movie Reviews
With Jim Sabatini


Johnny Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow and Ewan McGregor

Rated: R for some language and sexual material.
Reviewed by: Chris  
Release date: January 23, 2015 Released by: Lions Gate Films

Johnny Depp stars in this silly caper comedy as Charlie Mordecai, a disreputable art dealer living in London with his beautiful wife Joanna (played by Gweneth  Paltrow using a barely passable British accent).
They live the life of privilege. They have a huge mansion,  a body guard/manservant (Paul Bettany) to drive them around  and they hobnob with the elite.  It all looks good — but, they're about to lose it all because of 8 million pounds  in back taxes that they owe to the British Government,  When a government agent (Ewan McGregor) pressures Mordecai to help find a stolen Goya painting that might have a clue to the whereabouts of a Nazi treasure, he accepts.  Of course, he believes that the agency will be so impressed with his superior detecting ability, they will forgive the debt.
Mordecai searches from Hong Kong, Moscow and Los Angeles for the painting, all the while being chased, shot at and banged up by thugs in each country.  A running joke is that his poor bodyguard gets the bulk of the abuse - he's either being shot, or knocked out or threatened to have his fingers cut off, while Mordecai is usually running away in the opposite direction.
Reminiscent  of Peter Sellers' Inspector Clousseau , the film is based on novels by Kyril Bonfiglioli.  Depp has a lot of fun with this foppish, mustachioed ( a great deal of screen time is devoted to Joanna's aversion to it)  character. 
Directed by David Koepp, Mordecai isn't a great comedy, but it does have a few laughs and Depp (doing his favorite thing — wearing a costume and acting over the top) is still enjoyable to watch.

  Frank Chris Jim Dave Nina Dayra Howard Jennifer Kathleen  Avg. 
Mortdecai     C+   D+   D                  C- 

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