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Friday, August 19, 2016

Goodbye Lover (1998)

A psychotic real estate agent (Patricia Arquette) is having an affair with her brother in law (Don Johnson). When he spurns her for another woman (Mary Louise Parker), she plots her revenge but that's only the tip of the iceberg of murders, double crosses and four million dollars. A missed opportunity. This neo noir black comedy needed a smoother and more efficient touch than director Roland Joffe is able to give it. Whoever thought Joffe, the director of such heavy films as THE KILLING FIELDS and THE MISSION was the man to for a darkly humorous thriller was misguided. It needed the hand of someone like Brian De Palma who proved with BODY DOUBLE and DRESSED TO KILL that he was the ideal man for the job. There's also a major blunder in the casting. Ellen DeGeneres is a terrific comedienne but a lousy actress and she has a pivotal role as the police detective investigating the murders and her line readings are flat to put it mildly. The ending doesn't feel right either and that's because it was changed because of those damn test screenings. A major character is killed but in the new ending, they're allowed to survive. Still, it's worth watching for what might have been rather than what it is. With Dermot Mulroney, Vincent Gallo, Barry Newman, Lisa Eichhorn, Ray McKinnon, Alex Rocco, Andre Gregory and John Neville.

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