Infamous (15)

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The ViewBirmingham Review

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Review byMatthew Turner24/10/2006

Four out of Five stars
Running time: 118 mins

Opens London Film Festival: October 26th

Impressively made, brilliantly acted and superbly written, this covers the same ground as Capote but comes at the story from a slightly different angle.

What's it all about?
Beaten into cinemas by Capote earlier this year, Infamous tells the same story but shifts the focus and presents it slightly differently. The film follows flamboyant author Truman Capote (Toby Jones) as he travels to Kansas and investigates the brutal murder of the Clutter family, eventually becoming obsessed with one of the killers, (Daniel Craig as Perry Smith).

Based on George Plimpton's collection of reminiscences about Capote, the film intercuts the unfolding events in Kansas with several to-camera interviews featuring the perplexed reactions of Capote's high society friends back in New York. These include Sigourney Weaver as Babe Paley, Hope Davis as Slim Keith and Juliet Stevenson as Diana Vreeland.

The Good
British actor Toby Jones is terrific as Truman, completely disappearing into the role and turning his bizarre behaviour into a veritable tour de force. There's also a real sense of joy and a lust for life in Jones' performance that was missing from Philip Seymour Hoffman in Capote.

The supporting cast are wonderful and provide some delightful moments, particularly Gwyneth Paltrow, who's only in the film to croon a Cole Porter song over the opening credits, but she does it beautifully. Special praise goes to Jeff Daniels (sans beard for once) as Sheriff Dewey and to Sandra Bullock's touching performance as Nelle Harper Lee.

The Great
The dialogue is superb and the script crackles with witty lines and amusing little details, such as the way in which the Kansas townsfolk repeatedly address Truman as Ma'am. In fact, the only duff note is the casting of Daniel Craig – his performance is fine, but he's blatantly too old for the part.

Worth seeing?
This is a fascinating story and Infamous works brilliantly, whether viewed on its own or as a companion piece to Capote. Recommended.

Film Trailer

Infamous (15)
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Content updated: 17/10/2017 10:46

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