I was enchanted with Map of the Human Heart when I first saw it in 1993. Revisiting it today I am less enthralled but still charmed. It's one of those movies that makes you legitimately feel like you've become part of its universe, particularly the scenes in the frigid arctic, which you can almost feel on your skin. A variety of actors play our two leads from childhood to adulthood, as an Eskimo boy and half-Indian girl taunt one another as children, then grow to love each other as adults -- despite the ravages of a raging World War, which makes for a fantastic love story backdrop.
It would be easy -- almost mandatory -- to dismiss Deterrence as a ridiculous piece of late night paranoia (Plot: The president (played by Kevin Pollak!?) is stuck in a Colorado diner during a blizzard, where he finds himself entering a nuclear war with Iraq over a new invasion into Kuwait, by Saddam Hussein's son!). Well, it's a ballsy plot, to say the least. And in fact, it's quite gripping, and I'd be hard-pressed to script a better film given the basic scenario described above. Sure, former film critic Rod Lurie (The Contender) hamstrings himself with a low budget, a single location (a la Albino Alligator), and a crummy film editing job, but considering the obstacles, Deterrence is quite a ride.