Directed by Gregor Jordan
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Cramming a gross abundance of golden bodies, cocaine, breasts, Depeche Mode, Marlboros and Ray Bans into an ostentatious yet underdeveloped 98 minutes of thoughtless hedonism set in 1980s Los Angeles, The Informers
mistakenly reaches the apotheosis of shallowness in what it is — not what it represents. Director Gregor Jordan indulges in the same brain-dead decadence and callous interpretation of nihilism for which he skewers his solipsistic characters.
Bret Easton Ellis adaptations (American Psycho
, The Rules of Attraction
) have been divisive in the past — the most successful one capturing the authors absurdist humor — but Jordan is too obsessed with his own tawdry vision of the 13-storied source collection to tune into the material’s stylistic irony. A so-called mood piece that leaves nothing to contemplate, The Informers
amounts to little more than a convoluted tapestry depicting the people who live in luxury condos and the people who work there: self-absorbed pretty people, desperate poor people, a pill-popping housewife and a self-destructive Billy Idol proxy.
The older, veteran actors (read: has-beens looking for a career resurgence) who fill the adult roles — Mickey Rourke, Kim Basinger, Winona Ryder, Billy Bob Thornton — are all tragic Hollywood outcasts; the casting would be inspired if they didn’t all look bored with their stock characters, who are more familiar from cinema than actual life. The rest of the self-serious cast — whose much-exposed, defined bodices overshadow any shred of whatever acting ability they might possess — look confused, visibly hoping for a miracle to happen in the editing room. Unfortunately, the connect-the-dots transitions, which say little more than “every scumbag in L.A. is connected,” are as unimaginative as the soundtrack, which is essentially the Top 12 songs of the 80s as dictated by VH1.
is palatable in the same way porn is watchable. It’s unbelievably sleazy, empty, loaded with unconvincing posturing, and the dialogue is risible. Porn, however, is cheekily self-aware and gets you off; the only masturbation involved in this preposterous pet project is between the director and his camera.
Opens April 24