Filth and Wisdom

Can’t resist: Does Madonna’s other-than-coherent, surprisingly boring feature-film debut have something to do with her divorce? Certainly it makes her soon-to-be-ex-husband and fellow filmmaker Guy Ritchie, whose tricks she sometimes borrows, seem by comparison like Orson freaking Welles. There’s no wisdom in this script, co-written by the director (apparently when she was, like, 16) and Dan Cadan; unfortunately, there isn’t any real filth either. The vague, attitudinizing plot involves a handful of gently sinful Bohemian London flatmates: the mildly skuzzy, creatively mustachioed Eugene Hutz (that Borat-esque Ukranian dude from Everything is Illuminated and the lead singer of the gypsy punk band Gogol Bordello, whose music barely helps here) as an S&M worker; Vicky McClure as a socially conscious pharmacist who also happens to steal pills; Holly Weston as a ballerina who becomes a pole dancer; and Richard E. Flynn as some sort of blind, sad, pseudo-profound professor. It’s warm-hearted, at least.

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