Review of Little Lady Fauntleroy
In the early 90s a young child of 10 was paraded on shows such as Wogan as a child-prodigy The `Harpo Marx lookalike` was said have a talent for valuing antiques. He was also an articulate speaker who intrigued audiences by his apparent self possession. Several years in a Keith Allen goes to Cardiff with a film crew to interview the young boy to see what has become of him.
He finds that James is now a woman called Lauren; living with a family who share a bizarre reality that is just half a click from the world you and I recognise. The family somehow survive as a unit besieged on all sides by antagonistic neighbours.
Keith Allen was sent in cold and the result is a delight for all concerned until the final show-down in a local restaurant. The final scene is worthy of Wife Swap for its anger and recrimination complete with one person storming out.
The picture is clear enough and the documentary is presented in recognisable form with lots of different organisations and occasionally peculiar camera angles.
There is no problem with the sound although it would have been nice to have subtitles as an add-on. There is quite a lot to take in; narration by Keith Allen, interviews by Allen and the audio commentary on top.
This extra is worth the price of admission. Recorded over Allen`s already laconic narrative this is an absolute corker. It is Allen with Victor Lewis Smith (exec producer) and Ned Parker (Producer). There are plenty of adiotnal comments about this extraordinary family and the farting dog.
There are some additional scenes including an extended karaoke night which includes Keith Allen`s contribution to the world of music.
This is an odd tale of some extremely dysfunctional people and is therefore compulsively awful. The straight documentary is entertaining enough but adding in the outtakes and the commentary crowns it.
For people watchers, psychology students, and people who love to see the world of weird this is a great night`s entertainment. Enjoying this a entertainment doesn`t get round the fact that these are real people who have constructed paper-thin reality to get themselves out a cruel world. Yes this kind of viewing brings out the worst in me.
There are so many moments to enjoy from the Dick Emery high-heeled gait to the startling fact that Lauren`s father is the former holder of the World Record for the largest Yorkshire pudding. Keith Allen`s straight approach draws us in and we share his complete disbelief of this fantasy world.
Reccomended viewing-it will make you feel more normal.