ian dury is an attractively and eccentrically manic lyricist that has his own way of thinking. and this film could capture his attractiveness very well via the never better andy serkis and the storytelling style that used an on stage ian dury lookalike (that would be andy serkis) as the narrator of this biopic.
sex & drugs & rock & roll kicked things off very well by using the song “billericay dickie” as a greeting to the audience. we can watch how ian dury and his band struggled at making it in the top flight. we can watch how ian dury loved his family but didn’t know how to do it properly. we can watch how ian dury loved joking wittily and arrogantly. we can watch how the cartoonish atmosphere really suits ian dury’s personality. everything is very good to watch in the beginning of the film.
but then we stumbled upon things that is called biopic cliches. ian dury said, “never let the truth get in the way of a good story.” but sex & drugs & rock & roll does let the truth get in the way of a good story. it’s not that the truths are being told in an unattractive way, in fact, it is trying too hard to be attractive. it makes the film a bit boring, especially in the conflicts within the family, whether when he was still a child or when he’s already a dad. the director tried to show the audience the sensitive side of ian dury, but the results are, like i have said before, just another biopic cliches.
but you just can’t deny the greatness of andy serkis in this film. after his ian dury portrayal, andy serkis must not act as a cgi creature again, no matter how good he is at it. he is far better when he shows us his face in his screen time. he even sings like ian dury in this film. simply put, he is the soul of this film. stay away from him, peter jackson.
let’s not talk about the music in the film, because it’s ian dury and the blockheads for fuck’s sake. let’s just put it this way: if nikola tesla is a mad scientist, then ian dury is a mad lyricist. there.
to make things short, sex & drugs & rock & roll is a good first solo feature film by director mat whitecross, but it can be better.