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THE MAN FROM ELYSIAN FIELDS

For some, just gazing at the topography of such disparate faces as James Coburn, Anjelica Huston, and Mick Jagger would make George Hickenlooper’s film worth a visit. For the rest of us, this pretentious and contrived tale of an insipid failed writer (Andy Garcia) and his exploration of the depths of prostitution, artistic and otherwise, will hardly be blissful.

Taking a job at the title male-escort agency (run by Jagger, whose ties alone have more class than the whole production), Garcia’s Byron Tiller gets attached to the young wife (Olivia Williams) of a dying Pulitzer-winning novelist (Coburn) and is lured into a ménage à trois of dreary sex and turgid ghostwriting. Meanwhile, Byron’s clueless, long-suffering wife (Julianna Margulies) symbolizes the true happiness he’s abandoning in his vain search for fame and fortune. That she recites favorable reviews of his one published novel while Byron goes down on her is probably all you’ll need to know about their relationship or this film. (105 minutes)

BY PETER KEOUGH

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