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Chiwetel EjioforChiwetel Ejiofor - "Kinky Boots" Movie - Salon.com Review
Friday 14 April 2006, by Webmaster
The regal Chiwetel Ejiofor spices up this otherwise mild, winkingly naughty British comedy.
"Kinky Boots," in which a young man resuscitates his family’s dying shoe business by expanding his wares to include flashy thigh-high boots for transvestites, is the latest entry in that increasingly bulging category of cheerful, mildly racy U.K.-made comedies that you can take your gran to without embarrassment. You could do worse if you’re looking for a gentle pick-me-up: "Kinky Boots" is a sweet-tempered, mildly entertaining picture.
But there’s that word mildly again: "Kinky Boots," directed by Julian Jarrold (in his feature debut) and written by Tim Firth and Geoff Deane, isn’t badly made, and it has its share of warmhearted wit. But the problem with these movies — others include "Saving Grace" and "Calendar Girls," the latter of which was also cowritten by Firth — is that the warm fuzzies they impart dissipate into the ether almost immediately. These movies are clearly intended to be modern versions of the great postwar Ealing comedies, pictures like "The Lavender Hill Mob," "Kind Hearts and Coronets" and, my personal favorite, "Whisky Galore!" about a bunch of thirsty Scottish islanders who find ingenious ways to sneak massive amounts of scotch off a wrecked ship. The Ealing comedies are light entertainment, all right. But there’s also something sly and briskly intelligent about them. Their plots — often involving all sorts of murder, deception and thievery — never wink at themselves as if to ask, "Aren’t we naughty?"