An epic mosaic of interrelated characters in search of love, forgiveness and meaning in the San Fernando Valley.An epic mosaic of interrelated characters in search of love, forgiveness and meaning in the San Fernando Valley.An epic mosaic of interrelated characters in search of love, forgiveness and meaning in the San Fernando Valley.
A touching film with some incredible performances
Judging from the comments archive, I can see why this film polarizes its audiences as much as it does. This film defies convention in all possible senses--characterization, dialogue, narrative structure, heck, even the introduction. To be honest, this movie is truly strange. But that doesn't necessarily make it bad. Quite the contrary, actually. In my opinion this is one of the best movies I've seen. The acting was superb, and the performance I got from Tom Cruise was surprising to say the least. I don't expect much from him other than crocodile tears and beaming that thick smile, but here he credibly displayed a wide range of emotions. The photography was excellent, the pacing was quick (despite the 3:15 runtime!), and the structure! the best thing about it. Although the movie does dwell on a very central theme--the price and necessity of salvation--much of the movie is left undone, as raw material for thinking about later, as if the characters just keep on living. As I said, it's not your standard movie fare. But don't dismiss it for what lies most visably on the surface; instead, sit through the movie, soak it in, and when it's done, turn out the lights and think about it for a while. You'll be glad you did.
- Feb 2, 2002
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