Elisabeth leaves her abusive and drunken husband Rolf, she packs her bags, takes the kids and goes to her brother Göran. The year is 1975 and Göran lives in a commune called Together. ... See full summary »
Young Indian man Thomas is a nerd in his reservation, wearing oversize glasses and telling everyone stories no-one wants to hear. His parents died in a fire in 1976, and Thomas was saved by... See full summary »
In 1971 Salford fish-and-chip shop owner George Khan expects his family to follow his strict Pakistani Muslim ways. But his children, with an English mother and having been born and brought... See full summary »
Two girls, Carla and Lou meet on the street outside a loft waiting for their boyfriends. In a short time, they find out that they're waiting for the same guy - young actor Blake, who said ... See full summary »
Robert Downey Jr.,
Natasha Gregson Wagner
Francie and Joe live the usual playful, fantasy filled childhoods of normal boys. However, with a violent, alcoholic father and a manic depressive, suicidal mother the pressure on Francie ... See full summary »
With only the plan of moving in together after high school, two unusually devious friends seek direction in life. As a mere gag, they respond to a man's newspaper ad for a date, only to find it will greatly complicate their lives.
Financial "Master of the Universe" Sherman McCoy sees his life unravel when his mistress Maria Ruskin hits a black boy with his car. When yellow journalist Peter Fallow enflames public opinion with a series of distorted tabloid articles on the accident, the case is seized upon by opportunists like Reverend Bacon and mayoral candidate D.A. Abe Weiss. Written by
Jon Reeves <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The cover of Peter Fallow's book at the end is based on the original hardcover design of Tom Wolfe's novel "The Bonfire Of The Vanities." See more »
Before cuckold Arthur Ruskin dies in the restaurant, his cocktail glass alternates from between his hands to outside his hands. See more »
Judge Leonard White:
[to court room]
Racist? You dare call me racist? Well I say unto you, what does it matter the color of a man's skin if witnesses purjure themselves. If a prosecutor enlists the perjurers. When a district attorney throws a man to the mob for political gain, and men of the cloth, men of God, take the prime cuts? Is that justice?
Judge Leonard White:
I don't hear you...
Judge Leonard White:
Let me tell you what justice is. Justice is the law, and the law is man's feeble attempt to set down the principles of decency. Decency! And decency is...
See more »
The back cover for the DVD calls this movie "hilarious" and "the quintessential story of the go-for-it '80s." In truth, it is neither. The Bonfire of the Vanities is, however, funny in parts, poignant in parts, and entertaining throughout.
The protagonist is Sherman McCoy, a man whose one fatal flaw (an affair we know of from the beginning) leads to the downfall from his envious position as a "Master of the Universe." Tom Hanks gives an excellent performance and shows real emotion in bringing this highly plausible character to life. Unfortunately, his character is the only one with enough depth to be realistic. Even Morgan Freeman's Judge White, representing a refreshing dose of intelligence and honesty in the film, is perhaps too good to be believed. All of the other characters are mere caricatures, appearing too greedy, too pretentious, too self-absorbed, or too flighty to be believed. Bruce Willis might have made himself an exception as well, but I feel he simply lacked enough screen time to flesh out the different faces he had to show.
Nevertheless the story is very well told. If the other characters appear less than convincing, accept them as colorful background for McCoy, who is the real focus anyway. There are numerous laughs, and the other characters represent elements that are definitely present in society - even if not to the extent shown here. Wolfe's story is entertaining enough to make this movie worth seeing. And it might even make you think twice about the names you see next time you open a newspaper.
7 / 10 stars.
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