(No longer in theaters)
Christopher Plummer, Kevin Albrecht, Steve Kalafer, Peter LeDonne, Gene Saks
Nov 15, 2012
Christopher Plummer grew up idolizing John Barrymore as both a ham of genius and a self-destructive lush. He managed to arrest his own downward spiral, but in 1997 had a chance to channel Barrymore’s in William Luce’s play Barrymore. Revived in 2010, it’s now a dandy film directed by Erik Canuel. It takes place in a theater in which the ravaged, ruined alcoholic rehearses for a comeback that will never come—all while boozing, declaiming Shakespeare, and trading insults with an offstage prompter. God, I love Plummer’s performance—the twiddling fingers, the tipsy sway of the head, the reverberating roar, as well as the pathos of a man who can’t stop acting long enough to hear the cry of his own soul. The best part is last: Plummer as Barrymore as Richard III—raising goosebumps and, I’m almost sure, the dead.