Jim Ferris (Danny Huston) is an affable packaging tycoon whose sudden demise strands his doting wife (Jennifer Ehle) and two children in a purgatory of loneliness and suffering. ‘Alpha Male’ then assesses the willingness of each character to accept his or her new role within the family. It’s a well-intentioned, Bergmanesque drama about paternal anxieties amongst the nouveaux riches, and contains some fine performances and an articulate script. The tone is perhaps a little too frivolous to supply the film with any kind of lasting emotional depth, but there are some delightful moments, such as Mark Heap’s comic cameo as a bashful gardener with a penchant for relieving himself on the grounds of the family mansion, and Tariq Anwar’s editing conveys a pervasive air of melancholy. But the modern- day setting is totally out of sync with writer-director Dan Wilde’s distinctly old-fashioned views on male totemism in the modern family unit, and overall, the film feels too thin to warrant a cinematic release.
Friday August 11 2006
Cast and crew
Jennifer Ehle Amelia Warner Danny Huston Trudie Styler Patrick Baladi Mark Wells