Thursday, 18 January 2018

The Polka King (2018) - Richee Review

Another Netflix original, this time starring Jack Black playing Jan Lewan, a Polish Polka singer who has travelled to America to become a big star, and to create an empire for his son. Jan also has his own gift store and does odd jobs on the side to make enough money to keep his band together. Realizing he can't maintain a band the size of his, he starts taking investments, promising better interest then the banks. The government tell him what he's doing is illegal and he needs to pay the money back, but he has dug himself into a deep hole and keeps on gaining investors until his empire takes off so he can pay everyone back.

I enjoyed The Polka King. I think it has a lot to do with Jack Black, as he's such a charismatic guy. The film reminds me of Jack Black's earlier dark comedy Bernie: a amiable guy who does a bad thing but you can't help but like him. Even as he swindles people in The Polka King I found myself rooting for him as he believes he will be able to keep all his promises.
The film is amusing and Jack Black singing polka is enjoyable. The story is interesting and shows you all of Jan's mad schemes, but feels thin overall. I suppose there's only so much you can do when your doing a film based on a true story. The supporting cast are great with Jenni Slate and Jason Schwartzman being strong supporting actors. Jacki Weaver is superb though as Jan's step mother who knows Jan is up to no good and constantly questions his life choices, playing the villain of the film, thinking both him and her daughter live in a fantasy land.

Final Score is a 7/10: this is a good film well told and funny, with a great cast led by a great leading man in Jack Black. I'd highly recommend this film to most people, but especially those who enjoyed Bernie. It was also nice to see Jan is still working hard to pay back the staggering five million he owes to his investors. Richee

Have you seen The Polka King? Let me know in the comments below what you thought.


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