6.1/10
952
18 user 7 critic

Book of Love (1990)

A friend delivers John Twiller greetings from a long gone high school girlfriend. This makes him open his school's yearbook - his "Book of Love" - and remember the old times, way back in ... See full summary »

Director:

Robert Shaye

Writers:

William Kotzwinkle (novel), William Kotzwinkle (screenplay)
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Chris Young ... Jack Twiller
Keith Coogan ... Crutch Kane
Aeryk Egan Aeryk Egan ... Peanut
Josie Bissett ... Lily
Tricia Leigh Fisher ... Gina Gabooch
Danny Nucci ... Spider Bomboni
John Cameron Mitchell ... Floyd
Beau Dremann ... Angelo Gabooch
Jill Jaress ... Mrs. Kitty Twiller
John Achorn ... Mr. Joe Twiller
Michael McKean ... Adult Jack Twiller
Michael Cavalieri ... Ubaldini
Gary Ellenberg Gary Ellenberg ... Drainpipe
Brent David Fraser ... Meatball
Lewis Arquette ... Mr. Malloy
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Storyline

A friend delivers John Twiller greetings from a long gone high school girlfriend. This makes him open his school's yearbook - his "Book of Love" - and remember the old times, way back in 1956, when he was in his last year of high school and his family just moved to the town. He hung out with geeky Paul Kayne and tried to get the attention of Lily, who unfortunately was together with bully Angelo. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Guys need all the help they can get. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexual content and language | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 February 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Jack in the Box See more »

Filming Locations:

Glendale, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$1,382,259
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

New Line Cinema See more »
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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The US release was edited so it could receive a PG-13 rating, even though the directer wanted to give it an R rating, but New Line wanted to be teen safe. Many "F" words were edited out from it's original release but recent releases had all the original "F" words added the way the director intended to have it released. See more »

Goofs

The poster for East of Eden shows a picture of James Dean in his famous red jacket with the white t-shirt and jeans from _Rebel without a Cause (1955)_, a movie which came out on a later date. See more »

Quotes

Angelo Gabooch: Anybody touches my sister, I kick his slats in.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Be Kind Rewind (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

What Can I Do
Written by Alan Silson
Performed by Smokie
See more »

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User Reviews

 
If you like the book, don't bother with the movie.
15 November 2008 | by tnilfoSee all my reviews

If you came here as a fan of Kotzwinkle's excellent book, 'Jack in the Box', I suggest you don't make the mistake I did and watch this movie expecting to find the same story. Yes, the narrative holds close to the content of the novel, but the film captures none of the spirit of the tale. It's a little mystifying that Kotzwinkle was also responsible for the screenplay, as he seems to have betrayed his own original work.

Director Robert Shaye seemed to completely misunderstand the book as well -- not only did he clean up all the grit and desperation that gave the novel such depth, he also emasculated the wicked sense of danger that made the story so thrilling and surprising. As an example, in the scout camping scene in the novel, Twiller and his friends are confronted with a violent and sadistic rapist who threatens them with a similar act. In the movie the scene is sanitized, turning a frightening violation into a silly prank.

The film's setting had none of the grime and economic depression of the novel's coal-mining central Pennsylvanian town. You can't swap Southern California for Scranton. As well, many of the book's excellent dank and dirty characters have been lost to cleaned-up 50s stereotypes. Spider in the novel is a filthy, twisted bastard who rapes his 5th grade sister -- in the movie he's barely distinguishable from any of Twiller's wholesome friends.

Perhaps worst of all is the betrayal of the novel's main character. Twiller by the end of the novel is pretty much a hopeless case -- he is too dumb for college and seems destined for a depressed blue-collar future in the local button mill. In fact in his best dreams he imagines living in a run-down shack with a view of the local junkyard. Somehow Shaye saw him escape that fate and made him a wealthy professional with a sleek house, expensive electronics and fancy clothes. This is not the Twiller I liked so much. If you liked him too, don't bother looking for him in this movie.


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