|The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:|
|Original title:||Fading Gigolo|
|Production country:||USA 2013|
|Running time:||About 90 min.|
|Rated:||From 0 years|
Need makes inventive. 77-year-old Murray (Woody Allen) realizes how much truth is in this proverb when the threatening closure of his bookstore gives him a crazy idea. After his dermatologist Dr. Parker (Sharon Stone) mentioned to him that she was looking for a man for a Ménage à trois with her hot-blooded girlfriend Selima (Sofia Vergara), Murray persuades his best friend Fioravante (John Turturro) to make the two women happy for a fee. Although Fioravante initially doesn't believe that a man with his looks would be accepted as a professional lover, he does engage in an amorous test run with Dr. Parker. After she is more than taken with the florist's arts of love and Murray realizes how easy it is to earn money in this way, he immediately sets about finding new potential customers for Fioravante. He also meets the young Avigal (Vanessa Paradis), the widow of a Hasidic rabbi. Out of curiosity she is persuaded to a meeting with Murray's Gigolo - a meeting that will change not only the life of the young widow but also that of Fioravante…
John Turturro has got support from Woody Allen for his latest directorial work "Plötzlich Gigolo". And so it's no wonder that the film, especially in the first act, seems like a new work by the "city neurotic". Lively dialogues and a very funny starting situation let you conclude that Arthaus-Kost is an amusing and relaxed kind of food. Woody Allen as an aging wannabe pimp is just as funny as Fioravante's first seduction attempts as a professional lover. And also Sharon Stone, who once again shows her sexy side as a dear dermatologist, and "Modern Family" sex bomb Sofia Vergara as a dear Selima support this first impression.
But then the tone of the film changes considerably with the appearance of Avigal. Here Turturro immerses himself in the world of the strictly religious Hasidic, whereby the figure of Dovi (Liev Schreiber), driven by his faith, the morals associated with it and his jealousy, leaves an almost oppressive impression. The attempts to combine this world with the rather flapsy humor of the beginning seem a bit awkward and give the movie a very inconsistent character. No question, Vanessa Paradis and Liev Schreiber play their roles very well. You can see Avigal in her complete restraint very clearly, how much she longs to be allowed to break out of her life. In a romantic drama, this story might have worked really well. But in a casual comedy some elements of this storyline and especially the resolution seem a bit out of place and even a bit depressing.
"Plötzlich Gigolo" has some wonderful moments and Woody Allen is better than in some of his own movies. But at the end it remains the feeling that John Turturro wasn't really able to decide whether he wanted to stage a light comedy about a male whore or a more serious drama about the clash of different beliefs and moral concepts. The attempt to combine the two has unfortunately not been successful. Both parts of the story are well played and technically well implemented, but at the end they don't fit together to form a harmonious whole. And that's only enough for one at the end: with some exceptions just worth seeing!
An article by Frankfurt-Tipp