I’m somewhat surprised to say that Charles Shyer’s Alfie (Paramount, 10.22), a remake of the 1966 Michael Caine original, is a sure hit, a likely Oscar contender and (did I forget to say this?) a very fine film — touching, truthful, emotionally supple. The Oscar part of the equation certainly includes a Best Actor nomination for Jude Law. His performance as a smoothly charming womanizer (a limousine driver in present-day Manhattan) is more shaded and varied than Caine’s, and gets deeper and more affecting as it moves along. Alfie has loads of big-studio gloss and panache, but it pays off inwardly with obvious skill and finesse. Coming from the director of the schmaltzy Baby Boom, Father of the Bride and I Love Trouble, Alfie feels like some kind of life-change movie. The old Shyer movies (which he co-wrote with former wife Nancy) were massage-y and conventional in their audience-pleasing ambitions. Alfie obviously intends to please also, but it does so in a much more measured and subtle fashion and without copping out with a feel-good ending (which Shyer was pressured to deliver by Paramount production executives). It’s one of the best confections of its kind I’ve ever seen. After the failure of Affair of the Necklace, Shyer knew it was do-or-die time…and he did. Hail to the script (by Shyer and Elaine Pope), photography (Ashley Rowe), editing (Padraic McKinley), production design (Sophie Becher) and original music (Mick Jagger, John Powell and David A. Stewart).