Alan Moore is undoubtedly one of the most imaginative, original and intelligent of British creative figures. His will be a familiar name for fans of comics or graphic novels, creating the likes of From Hell, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, V for Vendetta, Prometheus, Watchmen, Batman: The Killing Joke and The Swamp Thing. However, the self-proclaimed magician and mystic has not been pleased (extreme understatement) with the adaptations of his work. The Show is his first foray into film.
Steve (Tom Burke), if that is indeed his real name, arrives in the dark heart of England on a search to find Jim Mitchum (Darrell D’Silva). He purports to be his brother. Much to his chagrin, he discovers that the silver-haired womaniser is no more after a tumble down the stairs of the local flesh pit. Even worse, a certain item of interest, a gold cross, has disappeared. The man of many names must descend into the seething underbelly of Northampton in order to find answers.
Taking the classic gumshoe films as its inspiration, The Show is brimming over with ideas and creativity. Burke’s ‘Sam Spade’ ambles through the streets like a cross between Robert Smith and Dennis the Menace, seeking answers in dark corners. Director Mitch Jenkins’ film suffers from a lack of focus. Much of the dialogue is stilted and the pace meanders far too easily, which might work in print but not on screen. The Show follows on where Moore’s magazine Dodgem Logic left off. It’s bound to appeal to his fans and has a certain kind of charm.
The Show is released on digital platforms, including Altitude.Film on 18 October.