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Jefferson Root Written by Jefferson Root
Jul. 1, 2011 | 11:36 AM





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THE PERFECT HOST

“Please don’t hurt me, I’m hosting a dinner party,” begs Warwick Wilson (David Hyde Pierce), as he find himself faced with harboring a fugitive on the lam in
The Perfect Host.  What starts as a conventional set up with a criminal on the run looking for shelter takes a hard left when the bandit realizes he may well have knocked on the wrong door.  Pierce is perfectly cast as Warwick, a tightly wound host who reveals himself to be much different than his stuffy appearance would have us believe.  Clayne Crawford also proves an able foil for Pierce as the two of them find themselves locked in a fierce battle of wills.


Problems with Tomnay’s script surface in the third act, which begins with an outrageous plot twist and never fully recovers.  Until then, though, The Perfect Host cruises along nicely on Pierce’s performance.  While he doesn’t make the viewer forget about Niles Crane, exactly, the actor displays an impressive range here that enables him to portray Warwick as believably dangerous.  When the film ventures outside the actor’s fertile imagination, it stumbles into standard neo-noir territory that never quite convinces.  Until then, Tomnay’s debut entertains and keeps us guessing.


The Perfect Host opens Friday, July 1st at the Laemmle Sunset 5 in West Hollywood.


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