Fifteen years ago, Anna Mayhew won an Oscar for Best Actress. Rich, famous, and beautiful, she had the world at her feet. Nearly forty years old, Anna is being offered these days only bland supporting roles, the kind she got her acting started with. So she spends much of her time thinking up clever and dangerous methods of self-destruction.
But she may not have to kill herself after all. Anna discovers she has a stalker—Vincent, a crazed fan whose idea of love involves a straight razor and lots of blood. What better way to propel the name Anna Mayhew into film immortality? Enter David Spandau, ex-stuntman and private investigator, who has been hired by Anna’s sister Pam to protect the star. But Anna doesn’t want help—until she meets Spandau and decides she needs his intimate protection all the way to the Cannes Film Festival, where she’s slated to be a judge.
Spandau finds himself falling for Anna, as well. But there’s the not so small problem of trying to keep a woman alive who’d prefer to be dead. To complicate matters, Vincent has followed Anna to Cannes intent on a bloody consummation of their relationship and he is being tracked by Special, an opera-loving L.A. pimp trying to recover the mob-owned money Vincent stole from him.
So a deadly cat-and-mouse game that begins in the meat market of Hollywood culminates at the Roman orgy that is Cannes. Author Depp proves again to have the deadliest and most perceptive eye trained on the entertainment business today. With an enthralling, hair-raising final act, Babylon Nights is a twisted and sharply funny thrill ride that will delight Spandau fans and newcomers alike.
Depp skewers the film industry with relish in his brilliantly comic follow-up to Loser's Town (2009). PI David Spandau, who specializes in serving Hollywood's elite, takes on the unenviable task of guarding aging actress Anna Mayhew, "Oscar winner and onetime tabloid fodder," whose career is in decline, but she's still glamorous enough to have attracted a stalker, weirdo Vincent Perec. Spandau, a rugged ex-rodeo rider and former Hollywood stunt man, reluctantly agrees to accompany the sexy, foul-mouthed Mayhew to Cannes, where she's to serve as a judge at the famous film festival. Sharply drawn supporting characters, including Special, an opera loving pimp, and a slew of movie stars, agents, and directors, enliven the lavish, ludicrous events at Cannes. Fans of Elmore Leonard's Get Shorty should enjoy Depp's clever complications and witty capers at least as much.