Director: Theodor Melfi
Cast: Bill Murray, Melissa McCarthy, Naomi Watts, Chris O'Dowd
Country of Origin: USA 2014 102 mins.
Released by ENTERTAINMENT FILM DISTRIBUTORS
'Vincent's no saint - he's cantankerous and miserable and loves the booze, women and gambling'.
Vincent isn't too happy when single mother Maggie (Melissa McCarthy) moves next door with her 12-year old son, Oliver (Jaeden Lieberher) but there's the chance of an earner. Forced to work long hours, Maggie reluctantly takes up cash strapped Vincent's offer to mind Oliver during her late-night shifts and an odd friendship soon develops between the pair. Together with Daka (Naomi Watts), a pregnant Russian stripper whom Vincent has a thing with, Oliver's education begins with an introduction to Vincent's daily routine – the race track, a strip club, and the local dive bar and so begins a tender and mutually beneficial friendship between the pair.
Bill Murray's made for the part, it's etched in his face and dead pan delivery and he holds centre stage with an expected laid back, off-the-cuff performance but why did director Theodor Melfi drop into the sentimental happy mode. Leave Bill Murray as he's meant to be. Don't dabble with happy endings. Oliver's choice of Vincent as a saint in response to Brother Geraghty's (Chris O'Dowd) class project on modern day saints and Vincent's big hidden heart thrown wide open when he visits his mother places 'St Vincent' on the sentimental downhill path to a don't worry folks, it'll all be OK in the end.
I missed the press screening and caught it at my local cinema. They liked Bill Murray and who wouldn't but I'm not sure they swallowed the old sentimentalist bit.