In Havana, Cuba in the late 1950s, a wealthy family, one of whose sons is a prominent night-club owner, is caught in the violent transition from the oppressive regime of Batista to the ... See full summary »
Since a version of this film was "leaked" - if that's the right term -- to YouTube a few days ago, it's had a second life worthy of the film's own protagonist, liberated from a job yelling at bad drivers in the Holland Tunnel to a bravura performance at Carnegie Hall. There have been many evocative or pastiche films of the classic era -- Woody Allen's Purple Rose of Cairo, Baz Luhrmann's Moulin Rouge, or Gary Ross's Pleasantville -- but none has more vividly, sweetly, and yet ironically invoked the magic of the movies as has this film. Don't be distracted by the Dan Ackroyd or Bill Murray cameos (fun as they are): keep your eye on the veterans, who've been in more films than you can count, and who bring their considerable powers to bear here: Sam Jaffe (The Day the Earth Stood Still, Bedknobs and Broomsticks); Paul Rogers (Billy Budd, The Homecoming) and the incomparable Imogene Coca, all part of a secret underground league of New York artists who seek to aid any who will give their all, unreservedly, to the cause of art. This film deserves an immediate DVD/BluRay release -- one can only imagine how richly it will shine -- and shame on MGM, Turner, Warner, and all who have kept this gem in their dark, dim, Gollum-like cavern of oblivion.
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