Posted October 3, 2007 in Film

It’s not a puff piece when journalist Pierre Peters (Steve Buscemi, who also wrote and directed) sits down with starlet Katya (Sienna Miller). It’s a knife fight. Pierre is a “serious journalist,” only his editor disagrees; bitter at getting passed over for an assignment in Washington, he can’t rouse enough interest in the blonde bimbo bombshell to raise his eyebrows out of his scotch and ask her about her “work”—a series of horror movies and a soap opera. But while Katya is better known for her performances in the tabloids than on screen, she might be a far better actress than she pretends as she turns off Pierre’s tape recorder and rattles his cage with a mix of stunning revelations and coy sympathy. The film seems made for Miller, who so clearly relishes the chance to spoof her own rep. But Buscemi’s adapted his twisty, wordy script from Danish director Theo van Gogh’s 2003 original. That van Gogh would be shot and nearly decapitated in 2004 by Muslim extremists for his next film, Submission—which flashed misogynistic excerpts from the Koran over nearly naked women praying—should make his interest in celebrity seem frothy and frail. Yet as Pierre struggles to gain the upper hand in this derailed interview, the film reveals uncomfortably dark truths about ego, pity and deception. As Pierre and Katya swill booze and cross and double-cross each other in her bohemian loft, the walls seem to close in, and escape slinks away. (Amy Nicholson)


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