Reviewed by: Andre Manseau
What's it about
Malcolm McDowell presents a documentary about his one man show, Never Apologize. This is a focus on director Lindsay Anderson, a director who gave McDowell his first film, If.
Is it good movie?
I've never heard of Lindsay Anderson. That doesn't mean he didn't have
a huge impact on the film world, especially in Europe- but he's almost
been completely forgotten. This is a documentary solely in the sense
that this becomes a video version of McDowell's show. If you're looking
for fancy editing, nice transitions and all kinds of interviews, look
Instead, you get Malcolm alone on a stage talking to an audience. You
might think that isn't enough but brother, let me tell you- old Alex is
a truly animated and gifted storyteller who will keep you engaged
almost throughout this film.
And what of the subject? Well, this isn't simply admiration and kisses,
but an honest glimpse into the life of a forgotten maverick. There's a
lot of talk about If, the movie that gave the men their start. This is
a true performance from McDowell, and the whole thing feels like a bit
of a tour de force. He wears many hats, and takes many perspectives. It
doesn't just come from his perspective and the director's, there's a
lot of different viewpoints mixed in. There are a lot of touching
moments, moments full of hearsay and potshots, and nice stories about
celebrating the late director's life.
At times, he's reading directly from memoirs. Other times, it feels
like he's an old friend talking over a beer or two. Either way, this
stuff is always interesting. There's a ton of funny stories about some
famous people in Hollywood, like Bette Davis, Steven Spielberg and
Richard Harris. Although this is McDowell's show, there are several
clips and memorable photos laid over the documentary to tie it
together. There's a few cool conversational tricks done with the
cameras that make it really seem like two sides of the story.
If I had to criticize, I would say that sometimes over the course of
almost two hours, McDowell is simply not funny, and the whole project
can at times feel a little bit pretentious and silly.
If I give it all away, it won't be of any use to watch this film. But
know that this is full of emotion, and an honest, multi-faceted tribute
to a man who led a very interesting life to say the least.