With some pretty harsh reviews under its belt, Fading Gigolo’s debut in the US didn’t go down well. But don’t let this put you off, as John Turturro’s film is actually a lot of fun.
Woody Allen plays Murray, who manages to convince his middle-aged pal Fioravante (Turturro), a financially strapped part-time florist, to become a gigolo. Although doubtful at first, Fioravante ends up entertaining clients like dermatologist Dr. Parker (Sharon Stone) and her wealthy friend Selima (Sofía Vergara). As ‘business’ grows through word of mouth, the pair’s financial hardships are finally over.
When quiet Fioravante meets Hassidic widow Avigal (Vanessa Paradis) the film gains some depth, as it delves into their complex relationship. Meanwhile, Murray and Fioravante’s new found fortune does not go unnoticed within Brooklyn’s unforgiving Hassidic community. Dovi (Liev Schreiber), a volunteer neighborhood patrol, is hot on their heels to find out what they and the love of his life, Avigal, are up to.
Fading Gigolo is essentially an unlikely story about loneliness, needs and desire. A fun and light hearted movie, boasting beautiful autumn shots of New York, at times it feels a bit sketchy with one dimensional characters and irrelevant details. Vanessa Paradis and Wody Allen’s performances, though, make it all worthwhile.
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