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Written by Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim
Performed by Tom Waits
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Calling Alan Rudolph an acquired taste is like calling CASABLANCA just a WWII film; it doesn't even begin to tell the story. I happen to like his films when they don't star Keith Carradine (whom I don't like), but can see why others don't. In a Rudolph film, plot is less important than mood and texture, and there really isn't much of a plot in this film, it's pretty much all mood and texture. The dialogue he writes is also right out of the 30's and 40's (a friend once said Rudolph films are what would happen in Bogart ended up in a Fred Astaire movie).
In this movie, the dialogue sometimes falls flat, and some of the tone shifts are jarring. In addition, Miller's character is a complete lout; we hardly understand why Boyle, let alone Christie, would even bother with him. And Boyle had a character to play in Rudolph's EQUINOX, but here, she just flails around.
Nevertheless, this is a good movie, and that's partly because of the romantic pull Rudolph does achieve, and because of the performances of Nick Nolte and Julie Christie. Although both of them are playing characters past their prime, Rudolph films them like old movie stars would be filmed, and matches his tempo to their performances, which are relaxed and confident (which contrasts to Boyle and Miller, whose discomfort is obvious). Critics up here noted this was one of the few, if not the only, U.S. films filmed in Canada (Montreal) that actually took place there.
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