The Gigolos

The Gigolos

DVD Rating: ***

Reviewed by: Val Kermode

Read Jennie Kermode's film review of The Gigolos

Along with the original 95-minute film comes 75 minutes of extra material. This includes two pieces of work by Bracewell, How To Write A Hollywood Screenplay – a ten-minute short from 1995 - and The Big Idea: A Portrait Of Entrepreneurial Britain – a 28-minute film from 2003. The latter features Sacha Tarter and Trevor Sather from The Gigolos. Both are spoof documentaries in The Office style, to which Bracewell acknowledges his debt.

The longer film concerns two entrepreneurs who set out to pitch their big idea “a consultancy that deals with outsourced protest organisation and management”, or “You pay, we shout”. It is very funny, but as a sitcom pilot was probably too much like The Office for its own good. What is interesting is to see how the team have built ideas from these earlier efforts into the making of The Gigolos, which is a far superior film.

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We also get a feature commentary by Bracewell, Tarter and Sather, Gigolos Uncovered – a “making of” documentary – and an interview with the director.There is quite a lot of overlap in this content, but still well worth a watch.

Bracewell explains how important it was for the feel of the film to shoot entirely on location, mostly in Mayfair. This was done guerilla style, without permits, much of it at night because of the nature of the story. Some locations were chosen as they went along and some extras were recruited in the street. The dialogue was improvised and, apart from their four well-known actors as the clients, scenes featured some real people at real events. Bracewell enjoys “blurring the boundaries”. This approach to filming results in a better than average “making of”.

Bracewell also expands on his central theme, the fragile relationship between the two main characters, and on the intentional ambiguity of the opening scenes. The title immediately invites curiosity and he wanted to keep us guessing about the nature of the film.

These were worthwhile extras to a film which I initially found hard to engage with. But I’m now looking forward to Richard Bracewell’s next feature, “Cuckoo”, which is in post production. I’m wondering whether it will include more bonsai.

Reviewed on: 12 Feb 2009
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A gentle observational comedy looking at the lives of a successful London gigolo and his assistant.
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Product Code: BFIVD799

Region: 2

Ratio: 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen

Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo

Extras: Feature commentary by Bracewell, Tarter and Sather, Gigolos Uncovered (Paul Sullivan, 2008), making-of documentary, The Big Idea: a portrait of entrepreneurial Britain, Interview with director, How to Write a Hollywood Screenplay, trailer, booklet

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