The Morning After

"Grim"

The Morning After Review


Lifetime-achievement Oscar winner Sidney Lumet made a lot of great movies. He also made a whole lot of utter crap, and one of the cellar dwellers is this, The Morning After, a Jane Fonda vehicle that alternately insults you and makes no sense at all.

Lumet earns points for starting off with a bang. The movie opens with a haggard Fonda, her feathered hair coming across like a fright wig, rousing out of bed next to a man. She's a little disoriented... who is he? She turns to wake him up, only to find a steak knife jabbed in his chest. But she can't remember the night before! Did she kill the guy? Or is this the most retarded frame-up in the history of cinema?

Advised by her estranged husband (Raul Julia) to go to the police, Fonda's Alex instead chooses to clean up the crime scene and make a run for it: Literally, she runs at random through the neighborhood until she finally gets a ride, returns home, and heads to LAX to get a flight to somewhere. Too bad it's Thanksgiving and there's nowhere she can go. (Her tearful attempt to get a flight to San Francisco is promising cinema until she abruptly changes her tune and tries to get a flight to Vegas, totally blowing the comedy and drama.)

Outside, she gets in a fender bender and makes a run for the parking garage, where she encounters a perplexed ex-cop (Jeff Bridges), who becomes her buddy for the remainder of the picture. And so we are left to figure out who the bad guy is, as the corpse reappears at random and the cops get wind of the murder. Is it Fonda, Julia, or -- absurdly -- Bridges, the guy she met at the airport!? Is he moving the body around to scare her?

Good lord, plots don't get any worse than this, and though Lumet stabs at giving all three characters a personality, the inane script from first-time writer James Hicks (you've never heard of his other two movies) drains any sense of likability or even relatability out of most of them, most particularly Fonda's Alex, who ends up as a wailing banshee of unbridled animosity, self-absorption, and -- don't forget -- rabid alcoholism. (The Morning After is presumably trying to make a statement on how bad alcoholism is, but in the end we feel it isn't the booze that's making Alex a freak, she's just that way.)

Fonda's terrible performance aside, most of the blame for this turkey falls on Lumet's shoulders for including such ridiculous scenes, such as one awful moment in which Fonda gets drunk on Thunderbird and passes out while Bridges watches. Lumet then plays foreboding, crescendoing music... as Jeff Bridges... opens the door... and... leaves!

God help us.



Facts and Figures

Run time: 103 mins

In Theaters: Thursday 25th December 1986

Distributed by: Lorimar Home Video

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 71%
Fresh: 12 Rotten: 5

IMDB: 6.0 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer:

Starring: Luke Striffler as Thom, Joshua Berg as Harry, Juliet Lundholm as Lucy, Jane Alice as Jess

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Captain America: Civil War Movie Review

Captain America: Civil War Movie Review

After the formulaic thrills of The Winter Soldier and Age of Ultron, Marvel's Avengers were...

Son of Saul Movie Review

Son of Saul Movie Review

From Hungary, this year's Oscar-winning foreign film is a remarkably fresh take on the Holocaust...

Demolition Movie Review

Demolition Movie Review

With its darkly emotive themes and brittle humour, this well-made drama by Jean-Marc Vallee (Dallas...

Bastille Day Movie Review

Bastille Day Movie Review

An attempt to muscle in on Luc Besson's Taken-style of thriller, this is an odd...

Secret Cinema Presents: 28 Days Later Movie Review

Secret Cinema Presents: 28 Days Later Movie Review

Expectations are a problem with this year's Secret Cinema event. After the jaw-dropping, goosebump-inducing surprises...

Jane Got a Gun Movie Review

Jane Got a Gun Movie Review

With its grindingly low-key tension and unusual perspectives, this Western has a chance to revamp...

Criminal Movie Review

Criminal Movie Review

Almost criminally entertaining, this preposterous thriller mixes buckets of humour and emotion into the violent,...

Advertisement
The Jungle Book Movie Review

The Jungle Book Movie Review

Using remarkably photorealistic animation, this remake of the 1967 Disney classic is warm and enjoyable,...

Eye in the Sky Movie Review

Eye in the Sky Movie Review

Almost forensic in its approach, this smart thriller explores a drone strike from a variety...

Midnight Special Movie Review

Midnight Special Movie Review

Gifted director Jeff Nichols takes on another genre in his fourth film with actor Michael...

Boulevard Movie Review

Boulevard Movie Review

This dark, introspective drama hinges on one of Robin Williams' final film performances before his...

The Huntsman: Winter's War Movie Review

The Huntsman: Winter's War Movie Review

Aside from success at the box office, there was nothing about 2012's rather uneven fantasy...

Black Mountain Poets Movie Review

Black Mountain Poets Movie Review

It's fairly obvious that the cast and crew began making this film with only the...

Victoria Movie Review

Victoria Movie Review

One of the most breathtaking films of the year, this ambitious story shifts from a...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.