Sirensi is quite irresistible a proposition : there's a bunch of nudism and carpet munching involving Portia de Rossi, Elle Macpherson etc. How could one pass ?
Grant is playing his usual, his only role : English fish out of the water. It works well with Fitzgerald, they make up this credible "progressive" English couple cca 1920. He calls her pigglet, she calls him pooh, stuff like that.
The sirens themselves utterly fail to deliver. All the rabid class warfarism blather is grossly out of place ; the group fails to function much at all, in spite of bandaids a la tickling, nude swimming and tieing to the tree. The artist and his apparently transvestite wife are complete failures artistically, they couldn't be brought to a semblance of life if Yahveh did nothing but blow on them for the remainder of history. And they have two prepubescent daughters living in the house ?! Nonsense.
The various gags, visual (show us a snake, show us two people lost on the ground, eyes closed, mouth agape - they were sleeping lol hihihi) and semantic (everyone's father was eaten by a shark hohoho) serve no purpose, like cheap cherry bombs glued for some reason to a pig.
Sure there's sex and guilt and secrets and confusion of identity ; there's reverie and fantasy and all the rest of the usual ingredients of the narrative art. And yet nothing comes of it, they're simply mangled randomly into a bloody pulp with no structure, no margins and in the end no redeeming features.
This film should be redone. Preferably on a scenario written by someone who's read at least two or maybe even three books in their time and so has acquired at least a vague familiarity with how storytelling works and what actually constitutes a story.———
- 1993, by John Duigan, with Hugh Grant, Tara Fitzgerald, Sam Neill, Elle Macpherson, Portia de Rossi and Kate Fischer. [↩]