Bernie LaPlante is having a rough time. He's divorced, his ex-wife hates him, and has custody of their son. The cops are setting a trap for him, then to top it all, he loses a shoe while rescuing passengers of a plane crash. Being a thief who is down on his luck, he takes advantage of the rescue, but then someone else claims credit for it. Written by
This film is terribly misrepresented by critics. True, it is not an insightful social critique. It is not a moving analysis of human nature. It is not a philosophical masterpiece. But it makes no pretensions to be any of these things. Hero is pure Hollywood, and is the very best of what Hollywood means, or meant at the time. The plot is clever, the writing is witty, the characters are interesting, and the acting is decent (Dustin Hoffman is great). The development is not meant to expose new subtleties of human emotion, but rather strongly to evoke obvious ones -- in this case, pride. In other words, it is meant to make you happy. That is not to say that the audience is barraged with heavy-handed judgments, merely that it does not require a degree in theater to like the film. It is interesting enough to be enjoyable after several viewings, but not subtle enough to require serious study.
Hero is perfect for the intelligent moviegoer who wants to watch a film for fun, and that is the context in which it should be understood. It is Hollywood at its best.
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