Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB
United Kingdom, 1980. Recorded Picture Company, The Rank Organisation. Screenplay by Yale Udoff. Cinematography by Anthony B. Richmond. Produced by Jeremy Thomas. Music by Richard Hartley. Production Design by David Brockhurst. Costume Design by Marit Allen. Film Editing by Tony Lawson.
Art Garfunkel meets Theresa Russell at a party and they begin an intense affair that spins out of control when their obsession with each other, and her particularly self-destructive ways, work against them. The film begins with Russell in a coma after a drug overdose, and while doctors do their best to save her life, the story flashes back to moments in her relationship with Garfunkel that key us in to how they got to where they ended up. Harvey Keitel plays a Viennese police inspector who is trying to understand what really happened on the night that Russell overdosed.
Stylishly directed to a frenzy by visionary master filmmaker Nicolas Roeg, the film’s main drawback is that despite all the energy and excitement that are in its photography, editing and dedicated performances, it’s just not that interesting, the plot is far too familiar and neither of the characters are particularly sympathetic. Like many of Roeg’s films, it features some refreshingly honest sex scenes that are arousing without being exploitative, but Don’t Look Now also had a ghost in it and The Man Who Fell To Earth had an alien.
The Criterion Collection: #303