Flawless Michael Radford

Flawless Michael Radford
When attempting to gain access to privileged information as a newcomer, it is generally best to befriend the unsatisfied outsider. Their lack of personal investment and somewhat more pragmatic and luminous perspective of social dynamics and allegiances will generally help to reveal any potential weaknesses or anything exploitable. Also, their dissidence and isolation will generally leave them desperate for an agreeable comrade with whom they can confide their secrets and perspectives. It’s a harsh way to look at things but logical when looking for specific information. In Flawless, this is how Mr. Hobbs (Michael Caine) perceives Laura Quinn (Demi Moore): an unsatisfied outsider with motivation to strike against her employer. As the only woman manager at the London Diamond Corporation in 1960, Laura finds herself frustrated with the glass ceiling she has reached, in addition to the schemes her male counterparts have concocted behind her back. When the janitor, Mr. Hobbs, devises a means to steal a handful of diamonds from the company, he turns to Laura for much needed managerial assistance. After exploring all her options, Laura decides to go along with the janitor, ultimately becoming a part of the heist of the century. Flawless is a film that is appreciated to a greater extent after repeat viewings. The care taken to develop each character and give them logical reactions to varying scenarios and power struggles becomes evident with the knowledge of what is about to come. Large, empty spaces and stark set designs are used to great effect to further reflect Laura’s melancholy and isolation. It’s all very cleverly crafted, although Radford’s deliberately paced direction detracts from a possible sense of urgency that could have helped the film appeal to a wider audience. The heist itself is initially interesting but is a bit of a letdown in the long run, as the film is much more concerned (and rightfully so) with the power dynamics between Moore and Caine. The DVD is relatively stark, with a theatrical trailer and a "making of” featurette where actors discuss the "dimensions” of their characters and the overall aesthetic of the film is assessed. (Seville)