From the man who gave us The Devil Wears Prada comes this conventionally predictable real-life story of Paul Potts, winner of Britain’s Got Talent and numerous other dubious accolades including the rare honour of performing at The Albert Hall.
It’s not as if Potts’ (Corden) rise from car-phone salesman in Port Talbot to operatic maverick hasn’t been well documented elsewhere. Decent performances by Corden, with Walters and Meaney as his parents, bring Potts’ story to life, but basically it’s your average rough childhood, a good mate, a great girl and lots of Nessun Dorma and better teeth at the end of the rainbow.
The whole point of productions like Britain’s Got Talent is to provide a rigorously staged forum for underdog talent – and the moist-eyed appreciation of die-hard cynics. Why throw good money (and talent) after bad and rehash it all for the big screen? No service done here to anybody but Messrs Weinstein and a shamelessly self-promoting Cowell, wolfishly announcing “You’re through.” You will be after this.
One Chance | Directed David Frankel (USA, UK 2013) with James Corden, Julie Walters, Colm Meaney, Starts May 22
Originally published in issue #127, May 2014.