Four mental patients on a field trip in New York City must save their caring chaperon, who ends up being taken to a hospital in a coma after accidentally witnessing a murder, before the killers can find him and finish the job.
After a break-in at their house, a couple gets help from one of the cops that answered their call. He helps them install the security system, and begins dropping by on short notice and ... See full summary »
A morgue attendant is talked into running a brothel at his workplace after a deceased pimp is sent there. However, the pimp's killers don't look too kindly on this new 'business', nor does the morgue's owner.
A yuppie couple buy a large house in an exclusive San Fransisco neighborhood. They renovate it and plan to rent two apartments on the first floor to cover the costs. A prosperous looking man moves in but is not the ideal tenant. He never pays any rent, drives the other tenants away and systematically ruins the lives of his landlords. Written by
Jim Sadur <email@example.com>
The policeman quotes an entirely non-factual law to Drake about a tenant having rights just because a tenant physically enters a building, even at the time the movie was made. No tenant has any legal right to remain on the premises of a single-family or multiple-family dwelling in any state without payment, and furthermore, because of Carter Hayes destructive acts (e.g., releasing the cockroaches and physical damage to the unit), Drake had more than enough good cause to have Carter forcibly evicted, either by the City of San Francisco police or the San Francisco County sheriff. See more »
William Goldman says that the last 15 minutes are the most important of any movie and that's what saves what is otherwise a sometimes fascinating but often dull film in "Pacific Heights."
The plot line is fairly interesting but feels rather drawn out through most of the film, until the fantastic ending pulls out all the stops and turns the film into something good. The writing in general is a bit contrived and the dialogue fairly wooden, but it isn't quite enough to destroy the film even early.
The acting is very uneven, led by a terrible Melanie Griffith and a middling performance by Matthew Modine in terms of screen time, but certainly controlled by the fantastic performance of Michael Keaton, one of the world's greatest actors. Keaton is especially fantastic in the final sequence, from his charming act with the old woman to his harrowing, venemous final scene there is a complete change in who he is and it is all the more frightening and powerful for the juxtaposition.
Schlesinger's direction, besides Keaton's performance, is probably the saving grace of the film. He manages to inject a beautiful dark style to the film that the script rather lacks but seems to want while also keeping us in a blunt reality with the plain, simple outdoor shots. His use of lighting and well-chosen camera angles wonderfully play up the situation.
Overall, "Pacific Heights" is a middling film with a fantastic performance by Michael Keaton and good direction by John Schlesinger that turns into something better with its fantastic, surprising, venemously satisfying ending. If you watch it, though, don't give up on it 'til it's over.
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