“Inane” would be the kindest description of The Doorman, a mockumentary about one particular gatekeeper to Manhattan fabulosity. Trevor W (Lucas Akoskin) is one of those sleekly handsome daily arrivals to New York whose age, nationality and sexuality are a mystery, but whose glib charm makes him the perfect candidate to stand watch at an exclusive club. When he loses his job, his dreams of stardom and suave friends dematerialize and he finds himself treading water in increasingly reduced circumstances.
Director Wayne Price maintains a puckish atmosphere which eventually curdles as his film fails to develop structurally or farcically. He’s enlisted a number of real-life NYC operators—paparazzo Patrick McMullen, club owner Amy Sacco, the slightly creepy Peter Bogdanovich and actual “door god” Fabrizio Brienza, who provides the movie’s only amusing moments with his polished sleaze—to lend tongue-in-cheek commentary, but there’s a synthetic feel to this entire enterprise so thick that viewer detachment becomes inevitable. Trevor W is obnoxious and self-entitled to the Nth degree but, when he falls from grace, you cannot derive even sneaky satisfaction, such is the cartoonish nature of this project. His downward spiral is executed with an comic desperation so flailing that you just sit there, muttering to yourself…“dumb.”
This writer worked the opening night of Studio 54 where the velvet rope concept was born; there is, indeed, a fascinating film to be made on this theme, but Price’s uncertain effort at satire seems a particular waste of time.