Jude Law dazzles every broad in the city as a charming ‘Alfie’

Tracy Ferra

British womanizer Alfie Elkins’ self-described priorities lean toward “wine, women and, well, actually that’s it, wine and women.”

In this modernized version of the 1960s Michael Caine classic, Alfie (Jude Law), is a limo driver whose only goal in life is the pursuit of women. Alfie serially dates New York city “birds,” from housewife Dorie (Jane Krakowski), to older “high caliber” vixen Liz (Susan Sarandon), with little to no regard for emotions or the consequences of his actions.

It takes Alfie a brush with disease, the destruction of his relationship with best friend Marlon (Epps), and a seriously codependent relationship with charming but wrecked Nikki (Miller) to question his habits, but the movie’s existential tendencies leave the viewer wondering if Alfie will ever change his ways.

Although the plot events of “Alfie” lean towards predictable at times, they are rescued from being overly cheesy due to Alfie’s complex nature as a character and director Charles Shyer’s strict attention to cinematic symbolism.

On the surface Alfie seems one dimensional, but under closer examination he is actually a very dynamic character. After his on-screen exchanges, Alfie often makes side commentaries to the audience about his actions, allowing the viewer to understand his perspective.

Shyer peppers these side notes, engaging dialogue, and swift plot action with the running thread of symbolism. Words, such as “desire” or “lost,” are painted on giant billboards throughout New York City, and help proclaim the tone of a scene.

When Alfie gets sick his hospital room is right outside a graveyard, and the happenings there often foreshadow changes in Alfie’s mood or situation. Alfie is endearing and cocky, yet confused; his character, combined with the movie’s stellar cast and intriguing situations make this film a definite must see this fall.