A few weeks ago, Fes and I were about to watch a completely different movie when a trailer played for The Perfect Host. Neither of us had heard of the film before, but the trailer caught our attention. The plot seemed to involve a bank thief who cons his way into the home of a rich stranger who is the midst of preparing for a dinner party, and yet things are not as they seem between criminal and victim. Also, the victim is played by David Hyde Pierce.
(Yup, he’s the brother from Frasier.)
Given that I think David Hyde Pierce is a hoot, I immediately wrote down the title of the film for later consumption.
A few weeks later, I’m pleased to report that The Perfect Host is a low-budget gem. The script is snappy, the plot is clever, and the whole thing swirls around a scenery-chewing David Hyde Pierce. I hesitate to say more about the plot, because it’s worth going in with as little foreknowledge as possible. I’ll just say that, yes, the film plays a bit with the definition of villain and victim.
The film isn’t perfect, as it sometimes seems too self-consciously clever and has one act too many. But that’s a minor quibble against the film’s other charms. The Perfect Host was made for a budget of $1 million, and frankly, I’d rather see another 650 films like this than another Avatar.
Also, if I can’t sell you on this movie with the words “scenery-chewing David Hyde Pierce” alone, I can’t help you.
The Perfect Host is readily available on DVD and through a slew of streaming services (including Netflix, Vudu, iTunes, and Amazon).