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"Niagra, Niagra" begins quietly in a drugstore in Poughkeepsie, where Marcie, the film's disarming heroine, likes to shoplift. She literally crashes into Seth, a quiet outsider, also on a shoplifting spree. Marcie invites Seth to accompany her to Canada to find a black hairstyling head. They set off in Seth's beat-up station wagon, destined for a toy store in Toronto. While on the road, Marcie confides to Seth that she has Tourette's syndrome, necessitating a series of detours to liquor stories and pharmacies along the roads of upstate New York. Written by
Like many others, I watched this movie on one of the indie movie channels on TV, mainly intrigued by the opening sequence (the shots of the characters shoplifting reminded me of the Breakfast Club for some reason--I think it was the trenchcoat and hi-tops) and unusual description. I didn't go into it with very high expectations, I guess because it was hard for me to get past "The Craft" in my mind. But I was truly shocked, and touched, by this film.
At first, the two characters seemed so strange, it was like they were trying TOO hard to be bizarre. But as the film progressed, their behavior took a backseat to the story that emerged--simply that of a star-crossed love, and the difficulty of being different in a society that has no place for you.
In a story that seems most familiar, the two go from one locale to another, seeking medicine, and comfort, but are turned away. The only friendly face they find is a self-ostracized woodsman, a self-confessed chicken lover. Just see it and you'll understand.
There were a couple of Harold and Maude references, including the final scene over Niagara Falls. It was just so powerful, the tension building to a moment you knew would be devastating...but it's almost impossible to accept how devastating it becomes. Left my crying for a good fifteen minutes. But it wasn't all sad. Marcy's disorder provides intentional comic relief at times, proving that sometimes laughing at the situation you're in is the only way to keep from going mad.
I will rent and watch again.
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