Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.
USA/United Kingdom, 1991. Circle Films, Working Title Films. Screenplay by Joel Coen, Ethan Coen. Cinematography by Roger Deakins. Produced by Ethan Coen, Joel Coen. Music by Carter Burwell. Production Design by Dennis Gassner. Costume Design by Richard Hornung. Film Editing by Ethan Coen, Joel Coen. Academy Awards 1991. Cannes Film Festival 1991. Golden Globe Awards 1991. New York Film Critics Awards 1991.
In this highly stylized Coen Brothers comedy, John Turturro plays a Broadway playwright who is brought out to Hollywood to write films. Initially thrilled at the prospect of changing media and bringing his intense story lines to the world of cinema, he ends up realizing that his dreams are all for naught when up against the packaged-deal mentality of the studio’s maniacal boss (Michael Lerner doing a terrific Louis B. Mayer impersonation). Also starring Judy Davis, this film features delightful performances, gorgeous cinematography, beautiful sets and costumes, and very little substance. However, it is enjoyable and intelligent, even though it is far from the Coens’ best.