Seduced and Abandoned review

This breezy documentary details the efforts Baldwin and Toback go through to acquire financing for their new project together. Their proposed venture is a sort of remake of Last Tango in Paris set in Iraq, a story of sexual exploration called Last Tango in Tikrit to star the 30 Rock actor and Neve Campbell.

The two japesters journey to the 2012 Cannes film festival where they try to curry favour with various financiers, none of whom show much enthusiasm for their endeavour. $4-5 million is the average budget quoted to them, far less than their egos demand. But they also meet some movie luminaries who share their thoughts about the film festival and the movie industry in general. Bertolucci, Polanski, Scorsese and Coppola are the veterans waxing lyrical on how the system has changed. Actors are also interviewed. James Caan is welcomingly down to earth in his opinions, Diane Kruger slightly pretentious in her musings while Ryan Gosling discusses the tribulations of the audition process in a struggling actor's life with entertaining precision.

We follow Baldwin and Toback from hotel to hotel and premiere to premiere along the sunny French riviera. They don't get anywhere with the moneymen but their meetings with the movie makers are most enjoyable. They have an odd couple charm about them and one gets a sense that they're doing it all with an impish glint in their eyes. Seduced and Abandoned certainly doesn't take itself all that seriously. It's a breath of fresh air, likeable and freewheeling, an agreeable peek behind the curtain and a delight for film fans.

Seduced and Abandoned at IMDb

Stuart O'Connor is the Managing Editor of Screenjabber, the movie review website he co-founded with Neil Davey far too many years ago. He likes all genres, as long as the film is good (although he does enjoy the occasional bad "guilty pleasure"), and drinks way too much coffee.

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