Barney’s Version 2010


Canadian humorist Mordecai Richler’s work hasn’t been particularly well served by the silver screen; after an auspicious start with 1974’s The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz, things fizzled after 1977’s urban outlaw tale Fun With Dick and Jane. Richler died in 2001, but Richard J Lewis’s 2010 adaptation of Barney’s Version is a useful taster for his dry wit. Paul Giamatti plays Barney, an aging TV producer with a hockey penchant, who looks back on the loves on his life, including Rosamund Pike and Minnie Driver. Dustin Hoffman contributes a lively turn as Barney’s father, and the whole enterprise has the blackly comic sprawl of a John Irving novel; it’s also very Canadian and very Jewish, and will appeal to fans of both cultures. David Cronenberg contributes a cameo.


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