×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

My Best Friend

Busting out of the barriers of the TV comedy arena that he rules in Greece, funnyman Lakis Lazopoulos' first film behind the camera -- with co-helmer Giorgos Lanthimos -- works mightily to make a big impression.

With:
With: Lakis Lazopoulos, Antonis Kafetzopoulos, Vera Krushka, Smaragda Karydi, Maria Kavoyianni.

Busting out of the barriers of the TV comedy arena that he rules in Greece, funnyman Lakis Lazopoulos’ first film behind the camera — with co-helmer Giorgos Lanthimos — works mightily to make a big impression. As a result, “My Best Friend” is a sex farce on steroids, overflowing with energy and excessive curiosity about what the movie camera actually can do. Like all good comedies, Lazopoulos’ script begins with a simple premise, but eventually it entangles itself in so many copious couplings that non-Hellenic viewers trying to read the subtitles go cross-eyed. Since its February opening in Greece, pic hasn’t been invited to major fests abroad, and even a well-situated screening at the Hollywood Film Festival didn’t seem to set distribs’ hearts racing.

Hopelessly delayed in traffic en route to his Paris-bound business flight, insurance agent Constantine (Lazopoulos) returns home to find best buddy and co-worker Alekos (Antonis Kafetzopoulos) shtupping his sexy Romanian wife, Andrea (Vera Krushka). They don’t see him, but Constantine is sent into a tizzy of nightmares and flashbacks of growing up with Alekos. Still, he manages to keep his wits together: He stays in Athens, all the while convincing Andrea and Alekos that he’s in Paris.

Alekos’ wife, Daphne (Smaragda Karydi), meanwhile is constantly suspicious of her husband, who actually had the hots for Andrea before he introduced her to Constantine six years before. But that’s only the start of revelations on the eve of Constantine and Andrea’s anniversary.

Though the filmic intention is to visually match the cheated husband’s newly altered view of the world, results are unbalanced at best. Set pieces abound, clearly informed by comic surrealism, and with wildly varying success. Pic’s frenetic energy and push beyond the boundaries of realism recalls a younger Terry Gilliam, but the ribald, joyously lusty sexuality is Lazopoulos’ own, and he uses it as a comic engine for useful if predictable irony in the final reel.

Lazopoulos has just the right look of slightly befuddled wonder when gazing on his world turned upside down. He employs that same wonder behind the camera, but might consider calming down some in future. Platon Andronidis’ lensing and Anna Georgiadou’s sets are ultra-contemporary.

My Best Friend

Greece

Production: An LL Prods./Mega Channel/Filmnet/Greek Film Center co-production. (International sales: Greek Film Centre, Athens.) Produced by Costas Lambropoulos. Directed by Lakis Lazopoulos, Giorgos Lanthimos. Screenplay, Lazopoulos.

Crew: Camera (color), Platon Andronidis; editor, Giorgos Mavropsaridis; music, Xaxakes; music supervisor, Nikos Mouratidis; production designer, Anna Georgiadou; costume designer, Elly Papageorgakopoulou; sound, Panos Papadimitriou. Reviewed at Hollywood Film Festival, Aug. 3, 2001. Running time: 104 MIN.

With: With: Lakis Lazopoulos, Antonis Kafetzopoulos, Vera Krushka, Smaragda Karydi, Maria Kavoyianni.

More Film

  • WGA Awards 2019 Winners

    WGA Awards 2019: Bo Burnham Wins Original Screenplay Award for 'Eighth Grade'

    In a stunning upset, Bo Burnham has won the original screenplay award for “Eighth Grade” from the Writers Guild of America. He credited star Elsie Fisher with him winning the award. Burnham won over Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma”; Adam McKay’s “Vice”; Bryan Woods, Scott Beck, and John Krasinski’s “A Quiet Place”; and Peter Farrelly, Nick Vallelonga, [...]

  • Alita Battle Angel

    Box Office: 'Alita: Battle Angel' No Match for China's 'Wandering Earth' Overseas

    Hollywood movies like “Alita: Battle Angel” and “How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World” are doing respectable business overseas, but they’re proving no match for foreign titles at the international box office. The Chinese New Year is bringing in huge business in the Middle Kingdom. China’s sci-fi epic “The Wandering Earth” pulled in a [...]

  • ABA_062_DAU_0060_v0409.87501 – Rosa Salazar stars as

    Box Office: 'Alita: Battle Angel' Wins Dismal President's Day Weekend

    Fox’s sci-fi adventure “Alita: Battle Angel” dominated in North America, but its opening weekend win isn’t leaving the box office with much to celebrate. Tracking services estimate that this will be one of the lowest grossing President’s Day weekends in years. Ticket sales are on pace to be the smallest bounty for the holiday frame [...]

  • Bohemian Rhapsody

    'Bohemian Rhapsody,' 'Marvelous Mrs. Maisel' Among Cinema Audio Society Winners

    Queen biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody” won the Cinema Audio Society’s top prize for sound mixing at Saturday night’s 55th annual CAS Awards. The film is Oscar-nominated for sound mixing this year along with “Black Panther,” “First Man,” “Roma” and “A Star Is Born.” In a surprise over heavy-hitters “Incredibles 2” and “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” Wes [...]

  • Oscars Placeholder

    Make-Up and Hair Stylist Guild Applauds Academy's Stance on Airing Every Oscar Winner

    Rowdy boos were followed by triumphant cheers at the Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild Awards on Saturday in Los Angeles, as the Hollywood union touched on a week of controversy over a reversed decision to hand out four Oscars during the show’s commercial breaks. Hair and makeup was one of the four categories that would [...]

  • Marvelous Mrs Maisel Vice

    'Vice,' 'The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel' Lead Make-Up and Hair Stylists Guild Awards Winners

    Adam McKay’s Dick Cheney biopic “Vice,” starring Oscar nominees Christian Bale, Amy Adams and Sam Rockwell, won two awards at the sixth annual Make-Up and Hair Stylists Guild Awards Saturday night. The film won for best period and/or character makeup as well as special makeup effects. “Mary Queen of Scots” received the prize for period [...]

  • Bette Midler

    Bette Midler to Perform on the Oscars (EXCLUSIVE)

    Bette Midler will perform “The Place Where Lost Things Go” at the Oscar ceremonies on Feb. 24, Variety has learned. Midler, a longtime friend of composer-lyricist Marc Shaiman, will sing the song originally performed by Emily Blunt in “Mary Poppins Returns.” The song, by Shaiman and his lyricist partner Scott Wittman, is one of five [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content