Best Sellers is a comedy about a publishing executive who tries to rein in a grumpy author who hasn’t released a book in 50 years. The obnoxious writer is played by Michael Caine, and Aubrey Plaza appears on the screen with him – her heroine will try to turn hatred into profitable cooperation.
Best Sellers movie explained
Directed by Lina Rossler
Cast Michael Caine (Harris Shaw), Aubrey Plaza (Lucy), Ellen Wong (Rachel), Scott Speedman (Jack), Cary Elwes (Halpern), Veronica Ferres (Drew) and others.
Studio Item 7, Wishing Tree Productions
Release year 2021
The wonderful British actor Michael Caine has about 130 films in his filmography, moreover, he has been nominated for an Oscar every decade since the 1960s. Alas, recently the list of films in which the actor is filmed has been replenished with second-rate tapes. For example, the unsuccessful comedy “Dear Dictator” (Dear Dictator) or a modern interpretation of the novel by Charles Dickens “The Oliver Twist Affair” (Twist).
Compared to them, Michael Caine’s new film isn’t that bad. It’s nicely filmed, and it doesn’t have a monstrous attempt to reimagine a classic of literature. But, alas, there is nothing special in the Bestseller either. It’s just a light film, moving from comedy to sentiment and repeating familiar clichés that have appeared on the screen a million times.
In the center of the plot, the heroine Lucy (actress Aubrey Plaza, known for the American sitcom Parks and Recreation), who inherited a prestigious publishing house in New York from her father. Previously, it published bestsellers, but now only boring books that neither literary critics nor readers like. A little more, and Lucy will go bankrupt, now is the time to sell the publishing house while wealthy buyers claim it. However, the heroine makes one last attempt to save the family business – she just needs to find the famous author, whom no one has seen for many years, and agree with him on the release of a new book. Much to Lucy’s regret, the writer turns out to be an eccentric old man who can only make matters worse.
To some extent, “Bestseller” is a road movie in which two opposites must find a common language. The characters in the movie go on tour to promote a new book, and it turns out to be a disaster. One character in the film behaves completely unbearably, and the second is trying to repair the damage done, which is getting bigger and bigger.
The film was created by aspiring director Lina Rossler and aspiring screenwriter Anthony Grieco. For a first feature film, Bestseller looks good, except that Michael Caine deserves a more inventive plot where he won’t be asked to swear countless times. It’s a shame that he still has to work with such material.
Comedy tries to make fun of what the modern culture of reading has become. The film’s script also pokes fun at a young audience who are willing to turn a rebellious old man into a social media star by admiring his inappropriate antics. With this, the tape noticeably overdoes it, transforming the book tour into rock concerts, where thematic merch with an offensive message flies at the speed of light.
The film is unlikely to surprise with unexpected plot twists or personal discoveries of the main characters. We have seen all this somewhere before – two characters who hate each other are forced to spend a lot of time together. One of them does not let go of whiskey, getting into scandals, and the second knows perfectly well that he is about to burst into tears.
Of course, viewers will expect this chaos to eventually turn into friendship. And the filmmakers follow well-trodden paths without inventing a new drama. They use all the famous clichés, adding a sentimental note to the denouement.
Starting this week, “Bestseller” is at the EU box office, so those who want to see Michael Caine as an obnoxious, grumpy writer can already choose a screening. If you do not take into account the final credits, the film is only an hour and a half.
Pros: The film is nicely shot; irony over the modern culture of reading; capricious writer versus publisher cons: Michael Caine deserves more inventive material; clichés that are easy to predict Conclusion:
light tape, moving from comedy to sentimentality.