Linda Reisman

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Light Sleeper Review


Very Good
Light Sleeper feels like a serious '80s film, though it was made all the way in 1992. It's a relic of the drug era, filled with a soulful performance from WIllem Dafoe (a conflicted upper-class dealer who wants to get out of the business), a synthesizer score, and virtually no scenes set during the day. Susan Sarandon and Dana Delany also look straight outta 1983, with a bouffant hairdo and a close-cut Jane Wiedlin cut, respectively. As for the film, it's more hit than miss, and Dafoe's earnest portrayal carries the movie through its rockier, less sensical parts. Worth a look.

Waking The Dead Review


Essential
Keith Gordon is one of the best filmmakers we have working today, and he's been quietly building a strong body of work which merits attention. His cult classic anti-war film, A Midnight Clear and his tour de force adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut's Mother Night were two of the 15 or 20 best American films to come out in the 1990s. Gordon is particularly good at visualizing internal landscapes, particularly slow collapses into paralyzing madness and terrible guilt.

It's difficult to say whether or not Waking the Dead is his best film, since it's one of those movies which seeps into you as you view it, then stays with you in the days that follow. It's certainly his most challenging in terms of tone, structure, and theme, deliberately convoluted and fragmented, moving back and forth between two different, contrasting eras (the idealistic '70s and the aggressively opportunistic '80s) and the evolution of its deeply troubled central character, Fielding Pierce (Billy Crudup).

Continue reading: Waking The Dead Review

Affliction Review


OK

When in doubt, set your moody psychodrama in the frozen northeast, which will set the mood perfectly.

Affliction has plenty of mood. Too bad the story stinks. Telling the twin tales of small town Sheriff Wade Whitehouse (Nolte) -- a father/son struggle with pop (Coburn) and an investigation into a suspicious hunting accident-cum-land grab -- both turn out to be as dry as dust. Wade, like dad, is a boozehound and an overall loser. Why girlfriend Margie (Spacek) puts up with him is a mystery. How the audience is supposed to care about him is an even bigger one.

Coburn won Best Supporting Actor for his miniscule role, and that seems deserved, but if you're looking for a far better frozen thriller, check out Fargo or A Simple Plan.

Linda Reisman

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Dev Patel Is A Lost Boy In Touching True Story Drama 'Lion'

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There's already an Oscars buzz surrounding this movie.

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Linda Reisman Movies

Waking the Dead Movie Review

Waking the Dead Movie Review

Keith Gordon is one of the best filmmakers we have working today, and he's been...

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