The Perfect Host
Whenever I see an actor who is best known for a certain character, that character is what always comes first to mind when I see that actor in a different role. I’m sure I’m not the only person who feels like this, but for me at least, it’s very hard to imagine them as another character. One of the prime examples of this is David Hyde Pierce who played Dr. Niles Crane for eleven years on the hit TV show “Frasier.” I knew very little about his movie going in but I knew that the character that Pierce portrayed was supposed to be completely different from Niles. Then something amazing happened: now when I see David Hyde Pierce, I WILL NOT think of Niles first anymore.
The Perfect Host starts out with a bank robber, John (played beautifully by Clayne Crawford,) on the run from the law and manages to con his way into Warwick’s home (Pierce) who is expecting guests for a dinner party. But the tables quickly turn when Warwick overpowers John and holds him prisoner and forces him to participate in his party games.
Quite frankly, I don’t want to reveal anymore because of all the twists involved in the movie. Honestly, some of them you see coming a mile away and are easy to detect, others are tremendously shocking. I do have a major issue with one aspect of the script that felt forced to keep the story going because without it, there would be no second act and beyond. One thing is for sure though, these two are spectacular actors and these characters probably could not have been portrayed better and maybe it makes the movie better than what it really is, but these types of things are always up for debate. With the rest of the cast having very minor roles, they are easily forgettable and swept under the rug of your mind as you watch because all you care about is John and Warwick. This is actually the first feature film for Australian filmmaker Nick Tomnay who considering a very low budget made a good piece of film. It is accompanied by a wonderful set design and soundtrack that really help with the flow and emotion behind the story itself.
I know this review sounds like I’m giving lots of mixed signals but here’s the cut and dry of it: I enjoyed the movie but I expected better. Maybe my standards are getting too high after so many film reviews and me studying movies so much. The two main characters steal and yet share every scene that they’re in. They are interesting and you care about what happens to them. I recommend watching it while having a dinner party. 😉