FilmDrunk

Al Pacino Plays A Horny Has-Been In The Trailer For ‘The Humbling’

Al Pacino is one of my all-time favorite actors. I would like to claim that he is one of the greatest actors of all time, and I am sure there are many people who would agree with that notion, but there is a small part of me buried deep within my soul that must concede that many of Pacino’s characters (Phil SpectorLieutenant Colonel Frank Slade, Ricky Roma, Dr. Kevorkian, Roy Cohn) kind of all sound the same. While I can’t say for certain whether or not he’s one of the all-time greats (he probably is, though), Pacino is certainly one of the most entertaining actors I’ve ever seen. I can watch him play any character and be enthralled for the entirety of his performance. That is why I am excited to check out The Humbling where Pacino is set to play a character that is practically the antithesis of himself – a washed-up, no-talent actor.

The film, which is based off of the Philip Roth novel of the same name, is about an aging actor’s rapid decline from greatness, and his suicidal journey which leads him to banging a hot, young fan. I haven’t yet read this novel, but based on the trailer alone I can tell it’s gonna be pretty Philip Roth-y (meaning filled to the brim with sexual neurosis and erotic exploits). I went ahead and wiki’d Roth’s novel The Humbling and scrolled down to the “Critical Response” section and was surprised to see this is one of the Roth novel’s that critics actually didn’t enjoy. Here is an excerpt:

The reviews for The Humbling largely suggested that, after several books that had received high critical acclaim, Roth had taken a misstep, to be blamed in part on his extremely prolific output in recent years.

In a highly critical piece for The Guardian and The Observer, William Skidelsky resoundingly panned the novel and called for Roth to slow down, declaring:

Roth’s new novel is, by his standards, dismayingly poor…it can hardly be called a novel at all; it is more an old man’s sexual fantasy dressed up in the garb of literature. There are, of course, redeeming features: an interesting initial conceit, the usual beautifully controlled writing. And the novel asks interesting questions about ageing and what it does to you. But these things aren’t nearly enough to make up for the absurdity at its core.

Skidelsky concluded by remarking, “On reading such a piece of scandalous frippery, it is hard not to conclude that Roth, rather than forging furiously ahead, should indeed be slowing down a little. And perhaps he should be getting out of the house a bit more.”

Despite the fact that the Roth novel seemed to be a dud (by Roth standards, mind you), Al Pacino still decided to purchase the rights to his story and play the lead character, so that’s got to be a good sign. Also, they got Barry Levinson to direct and Buck Henry (The Graduate, Get Smart) to adapt the novel. So it has to be at least a little good, right? And even if it isn’t, it doesn’t really matter. Like I said, I’ll watch Al Pacino play anybody and enjoy every moment of it. So I can’t wait to see this one.

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