The Look of Love | Chicago Reader

The Look of Love

Steve Coogan stars as Paul Raymond, the Liverpool showman who built an empire in the 1960s and '70s on strip clubs, nude theater, girlie mags, and Soho real estate. By most accounts Raymond was an awkward man, and Coogan plays him as a sad, gentle figure; the most touching moments here involve his tender relationship with his grown daughter (Imogen Poots), a sweet, spoiled, utterly talentless young woman who flops miserably first as a performer in one of his shows (she's the only cast member who gets to keep her top on) and then as a producer spending his money. Director Michael Winterbottom and screenwriter Matt Greenhalgh provide the essential outline of Raymond's story, but they're a little too preoccupied with its glitzy aspects to lay bare the inherent, some might say tragic, contradiction of a man who spent his professional life debasing women and his personal life trying fruitlessly to elevate the young woman he loved most. With Shirley Henderson and, very briefly, Stephen Fry.

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