For those who are constantly complaining about Johnny Depp's latest run of films, Mortdecai isn't for you. For those of you who like fine films, Mortdecai isn't for you. And for those of you who have any self respect, Mortdecai isn't for you. For those who don't fall under any of those categories, however, Mortdecai is most certainly for you. The film follows the story of Charlie Mortdecai (Johnny Depp), a British billionaire who's hired by Mi5 to track down a piece of stolen art, the back of which contains the password to a bank account containing millions of dollars.
I love Johnny Depp as an actor, I really do. I'm lenient towards many of his over the top and repetitive characters because he was my favourite actor when I was younger. His over the top characters, such as Willy Wonka, were what I grew up watching day after day. So I don't mind seeing him do those sort of characters every once in a while, which I will acknowledge as being an unpopular opinion. With Mortdecai, maybe it's time for him to stop. Maybe his caricatures have gone too far, so much so that he's finally landed a role that's as embarrassing as this.
It's a film that tries to be a parody of British spy movies, but lacks any humour, satire or action. Sure, the film tries to incorporate all three of these things, but it does so in the most unentertaining and cringe-worthy way possible, causing the final result to be a film that's not only awkward to look at, but it's also awkward to watch. I was ashamed to be seated in my seat, watching this movie, but hey, at least most of the other people in my cinema were too.
There was never once a moment in this film where I thought "hey, this is actually quite an entertaining scene." There just wasn't. Every line of dialogue, while delivered well by the cast, just didn't feel right. It felt off-putting and out of place, even discussions of the events at hand felt like a mix-match of one liners, none of which seemed to work in the least bit. For the first act, there seemed to be some potential, despite none of the jokes really working, but then this potential fades away and we're left with nothing.
Surprisingly, there was actually one scene towards the end that could've been rather funny, but it wasn't until after the scene was done that I realised this. I'll take you through the moment. Alright, so Mortdecai is laying in bed and we hear a bunch of moaning coming from the room behind the wall. Naturally, I just presumed that this was Jock's room, Mortdecai's man servant who's played by Paul Bettany, as he's set up to be a nymphomaniac of sorts. Mortdecai rings his neighbours, insisting that they have quieter sex and it's Jock who answers the phone.
The problem with this scene is in the set up. What usually makes a joke like this memorable is how it's set up. With the scene in Mortdecai, they're not clear in the set-up, resulting in the joke, which could've been funny had we not known Jock was in that room, falling rather flat. This is far from the only example, but it's certainly the one that's easiest to explain. Mortdecai, really, just isn't a good movie at all, but it seems that's always the case when Johnny Depp and Paul Bettany team up.
To sum up, Mortdecai wastes its decent cast with unfunny and awkward jokes in a parody of British spy movies that lacks in any sort of humour, satire or action.