Splendor

"Weak"

Splendor Review


The heroine of "Splendor," Gregg Araki's new anything goes sex comedy, is irresistibly adorable -- a sexy, spunky, sparkling Generation Y Holly Golightly with bouncy, ringlet hair and a freckled nose.

But aside from inspiring the protective vibe in every guy she meets and lighting a fire in their loins as well, Veronica (Kathleen Robertson) doesn't have much going for her. She's shallow, self-absorbed, irresponsible and so wildly ambivalent that the plot hinges entirely on her inability to decide between three lovers.

Two of them -- struggling writer Abel (Johnathon Schaech) and dim-bulb punk rock drummer Zed (Matt Keeslar) -- are so whipped by Veronica's considerable charms that they agree to share the girl and her bed, and both boys move in, forming an oddly harmonious threesome in the big, funky L.A. flat she can inexplicably afford on her salary as an office temp and aspiring actress.

But after a few weeks of having it made with two men she thinks she loves, along comes Ernest (Eric Mabius), the youthful, rich and adoring director with a serious case of puppy love who casts Veronica in a miniseries and tempts her with the kind of stability and prosperity she'll never find with her Tweedle Dee and Tweelde Dum flat mates.

What's a girl to do?

"Splendor" prides itself on eschewing romantic convention with its happy menage a trois, which is fine in theory. Whatever floats your boat, Veronica. The problem is, aside from being easy on the eyes, none of these characters haven't even a modicum of depth.

Robertson (also in this week's "Dog Park," but best know as Clare on "Beverly Hills, 90210") plays to perfection the kind of girlish sexuality that leaves young men dumbstruck. I admit it, if I met this girl at a party she'd have me wrapped around her finger in about three minutes. But it wouldn't last because Veronica is vacuous. She's 22 years old and she hasn't a clue what she wants from love or life -- and it doesn't look like there's a clue anywhere in her near future, either. She's a disposable girlfriend type and the novelty of her sweet sexuality quickly gets tiresome.

That being the case, it's no surprise that neither Abel nor Zed is much of a prize, either. They're disposable boyfriends. Every average, sexually liberated cutie in the Los Angeles basin beds herself a mock intellectual and an impoverished rock drummer at some point -- albeit not usually at the same time. But most of them move on, and the ditzy chicks that don't certainly aren't worthy of their own movie. (As for Ernest, he's the generic nice guy who probably hears the dreaded phrase "just friends" a lot.)

Writer-director Araki ("Nowhere," "The Doom Generation") spins a good yarn, gets a few light laughs and displays some creative technique, giving the harmless "Splendor" a congenial surface. But surface is all it offers and the movie has absolutely no anchor in anything resembling the real life.

If only we could all live in a world without consequences, where our biggest worry was juggling lovers who don't mind sharing. Then we could all be as superficial as Araki's ditzy, babydoll Veronica.



Facts and Figures

Run time: 93 mins

In Theaters: Friday 12th May 2000

Distributed by: Souvlaki Space Station

Production compaines: Summit Entertainment, Desperate Pictures, Dragon Pictures, Newmarket Capital Group

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 58%
Fresh: 11 Rotten: 8

IMDB: 5.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Veronica, as Zed, as Mike, as Ernest, as Mutt, as Alison, Audrey Ruttan as The Gloved One, as Waiter, Amy Stevens as Nana Kitty Cat, as Mike's Stupid Boss, Julie Millett as Supermarket Cashier, Jenica Bergere as Model #1, Paige Dunn as Model #2, Emile Hamaty as The Wizard Cashier, George Pennacchio as Newscaster, Wesley B as Himself, as Abel

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Imperium Movie Review

Imperium Movie Review

First-time filmmaker Daniel Ragussis takes an unusual approach to this thriller. Since it's based on...

The Girl With All the Gifts Movie Review

The Girl With All the Gifts Movie Review

Like a 10-years-later follow-up to 28 Days Later, this small British thriller takes a refreshingly...

The Magnificent Seven Movie Review

The Magnificent Seven Movie Review

Director Antoine Fuqua brings his usual fascination with violence to this remake of the iconic...

Bridget Jones's Baby Movie Review

Bridget Jones's Baby Movie Review

As it's been 12 years since the last Bridget Jones movie, expectations aren't too high...

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years Movie Review

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years Movie Review

A-list director Ron Howard worked with the surviving Beatles to assemble this engaging documentary, which...

Blair Witch Movie Review

Blair Witch Movie Review

It's been 17 years since The Blair Witch Project shook up the cinema and created...

Anthropoid Movie Review

Anthropoid Movie Review

Outside the Czech Republic, few people know about Operation Anthropoid, a spy mission in 1943...

Advertisement
Kubo and the Two Strings Movie Review

Kubo and the Two Strings Movie Review

From Laika (The Boxtrolls), this is one of the most beautiful, sophisticated animated films in...

Captain Fantastic Movie Review

Captain Fantastic Movie Review

An offbeat comedy-drama with a timely kick, this charming family road trip takes on some...

Hell or High Water Movie Review

Hell or High Water Movie Review

Sicario screenwriter Taylor Sheridan delivers another fiercely intelligent, engaging story that maintains high suspense while...

The 9th Life of Louis Drax Movie Review

The 9th Life of Louis Drax Movie Review

With heavy overtones of Hitchcockian mystery and intrigue, this stylish thriller is the enjoyably melodramatic...

Kickboxer: Vengeance Movie Review

Kickboxer: Vengeance Movie Review

The 1989 Muay Thai action movie Kickboxer starred a young Jean-Claude Van Damme, who pops...

Julieta Movie Review

Julieta Movie Review

Iconic Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodovar is back with another powerfully complex female-centred drama, along the...

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

An astute satire of the pop music business, this raucous mock-documentary is consistently hilarious from...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.