Malcolm Anderson is a reporter for a Miami newspaper. He's had enough of reporting the local murders and so promises his school teacher girlfriend (Christine), they'll move away soon. ...
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Malcolm Anderson is a reporter for a Miami newspaper. He's had enough of reporting the local murders and so promises his school teacher girlfriend (Christine), they'll move away soon. Before Malcolm can hand in his notice, the murderer from his latest article phones him. The murderer tells Malcolm that he's going to kill again. The phone calls and murders continue, soon Malcolm finds that he's not just reporting the story, he is the story.Written by
Above average thriller with a solid Kurt Russell performance
I think that The Mean Season is an under-appreciated, tightly crafted suspense thriller that, in spite of what other reviews have claimed, does not pander to too many cliché's--this film is old enough to have helped establish those very same tropes that have since become clichés. Remember, this was made before Manhunter, Silence of the Lambs, 15 Minutes, etc etc...and was one of the first films to deal with the whole notion of fame/celebrity/serial killers and the lack of ethics displayed by journalists.
The film benefits from excellent performances from Kurt Russell and Richard Jordan. As the two leads they carry the film and Richard Masur,as Russell's editor, sells every line of his character's dialog with complete conviction.
Andy Garcia makes a very strong impression and he is perfectly paired with Richard Bradford, who reminds me so much of my 1st step-father (an ex Marine Corps drill instructor turned cop)that i have absolutely no trouble believing him in the role of a burned out, bitter homicide detective. Mariel Hemingway is awful, as always. A truly terrible actress.
The direction by Philip Borsos is very tight. His framing and cutting remind of Hitchcock, there is a certain stylish elegance to the images (each of the killings is filmed with a minimum of blood but to maximum stylistic effect) and all in all the plot hurtles forward at just the right level of intensity. I will admit that there are 2 examples of ridiculous false scares in the film which were apparently studio-mandated(no surprise, really)and I guess I should deduct points for that and Lalo Shifrin's sometimes bombastic score--but I am not going to... because after 21 years of mostly pale imitators, The Mean Season is looking better and better with age.
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