Mordecai Richler: The Last of the Wild Jews is an interesting but not quite interesting enough documentary film about one of Canada's great writers and its greatest curmudgeons. Journalist and director Francine Pelletier presents an honest Richler biography. Pelletier ends up with the same problem many people had with Richler: it was hard to really get to know him. The documentary airs on Bravo! Sunday December 19th at 8 p.m. and Saturday December 25th at 7 p.m. Eastern time.
Pelletier uses archival footage, quite a few clips from Duddy Kravitz, a couple of promotional style footage from Barney's Version, and interviews with many different people including Richler's wife to draw a picture of the man.
Mordecai Richler: Last of the Wild Jews has its facts straight and does a good job of presenting the writer s complex personality. Because no idea lasts more than 20 seconds the documentary fails to connect with the viewer.
It is no coincidence the most interesting segment is the part Pelletier is probably most interested in: Richler s relationship with the Quebecois and the language laws.
Mordecai Richler: The Last of the Wild Jews is an honest and complete portrait of the man. It lacks a certain energy to make it more than just another documentary.