Watching Helen Mirren and Ian McKellen dance and weave around one another in The Good Liar, was, for me, a cinematic joy. These two actors share the screen together for the first time, and Warner Brothers brings it home on blu-ray for you today.
McKellen plays Roy, a conman who seems to have no scruples about taking advantage of anyone and Mirren is Betty, his latest target. But, since you know he’s a conman, you know things aren’t going to go the way that any of them have planned.
Based on the novel by Nicholas Searle,the film puts these two acting titans front and centre and lets the story unfurl around them, catching you up in the threads that will all come unravelled in the least suspecting ways.
They are joined on screen by some familiar faces including, Russell Tovey, and Jim Carter, and their supporting roles fill out the story, the characters and moments that we find ourselves wrapped up in. That same attention that is paid to casting is also turned to locations, and there are some stunning locales presented on screen (made all the more so by the high definition presentation of the blu-ray transfer).
Whenever either of the leads are on-screen the film absolutely sizzles, there’s a jolt with some necessary flashbacks that round out the tale, but even the narration provided by Mirren or McKellen captures the viewer.
It’s hard to believe it’s taken so long to get this pair on screen together, because they are absolutely dynamite together. It’s watching two actors bringing their craft brilliantly to life.
This is a film for adult viewers, it takes its time with the story, letting us know the characters through the narrative and their actions. I can see that younger film fans may not be willing to come to this story, because the pair are very much of an older generation, but those of us of an age, and those of us who love performances and these actors will find a lot to treasure in this film.
There’s an old school feel to the film, though it uses the most of today’s cinematography, production, and styles. You could see this film, with some changes, right at home in the films of yesteryear. Everything rests on the name recognition of the actors, and want to see them on their game – and this one delivers.
The blu-ray comes with a couple of deleted scenes and a nice little featurette that takes us behind the scenes with the cast, the director Bill Condon, and Nicholas Searle.
If you are looking for something truly enjoyable to watch this week, check this offering out from Warner Brothers and just enjoy the wonderful craft, chemistry and artistry that these two phenomenal actors bring to life.
The Good Liar is available today.