MOVIE: **1/2 (out of 5)
DVD EXPERIENCE: ** (out of 5)
Michelle Pfeiffer as LEA DE LONVAL
Kathy Bates as MADAME PELOUX
Rupet Friend as CHERI
Directed by: Stephen Frears
BY KEVIN CARR
Stephen Frears, who gave us “The Queen,” comes back for a costume piece with “Cheri.” the film tells the story of the provocative courtesan Lea (Michelle Pfeiffer) who falls in love with a young spoiled man named Cheri (Rupert Friend). Coming from completely different lifestyles but living a bit outside of the accepted mainstream, the two lovers must learn to resolve their feelings and relationship.
I’m not a huge fan of costume dramas, though Miramax has a tendency to release a lot of them (especially since the Weinsteins took their genre releases away). This film reminds me a lot of last year’s Miramax flick “Brideshead Revisited,” which I enjoyed to a degree but never loved.
The key to this movie is Michelle Pfeiffer, who gives a fine performance and manages to be both alluring in a mature woman’s way and also be a little too motherly at times. As the title character of Cheri, Friend holds his own, but he did seem a bit whiney for my tastes.
Also giving a solid performance is Kathy Bates as Lea’s rival. Still, for a movie that is so steeped in sex and carries an R rating, there’s a pretty scant amount of titillating sex. Sigh… such is the case with costume dramas.
The DVD includes deleted scenes and a making-of featurette.