31 December 2012 | Chrysanthepop
The Literal Smell Of Success
The 'Smell of Success' seems quite an an odd title for the film but a couple of minutes into the movie, I realized that the makers were being quite literal. Anyway, it's nice to see that there's a film about the fertilizing industry in the 50s and one that doesn't rely on toilet humour. First of all, most of the jokes were quite funny. I laughed at a number of them even though a few of them were overdone (for example the breast augmentation jokes, the jumping from the plane etc).
The visuals are beautiful. Despite being sepia tinted and almost devoid of colour, they look quite artistic. Most of the frames look like beautiful paintings. The 50s look is also very well captured thanks to the fine art direction costume and makeup.
Billy Bob Thornton does a decent job as the head fertilizer salesman who suddenly feels threatened by sensational Rose and undermines her in his attempts. Tèa Leoni is amazing, proving her comedic fort once again. Frances Conroy is a delight. Mark Polish, Pruitt Taylor Vince and Ed Helm provide good support. Kyle Machlachlan too isn't bad as the smug antagonist.
I only felt that the story lacked consistency. It would occasionally delve into subplots that are never developed. As stated earlier, some of the jokes were overdone and felt repetitive. Given the concept, it could have been a funnier flick but for some reason the Polish Brothers restrain.
Yet, it's a decent watch. A film that certainly has charms with some classy creative toilet humour.