The Miami Herald from Miami, Florida on April 22, 1990 · 599
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The Miami Herald from Miami, Florida · 599

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Miami, Florida
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Sunday, April 22, 1990
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599
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10D SUNDAY APRIL 22 1990 IfcP THE MIAMI HERALD INTERNATIONAL EDITION AT THE MOVIES Miami Blues : Tough funny frightening By BILLCOSFORD Herald Movie Critic In Miami Blues it’s Alec Baldwin in a spiked brush-cut vs torpedoheaded Fred Ward with Baldwin as the crook and Ward wearing the badge (at least until Baldwin steals it) It’s no contest for most of the movie until the seedy detective played by Ward finally gets his confidence back not to mention his teeth (Baldwin has stolen them too) Of course Baldwin steals the picture as well but that probably wouldn’t have happened if the two principal roles had been reversed As written the role of Junior (nee Frederick j Frenger Jr a felony-prone name if there ever was one) is simply more interesting Junior is charming in a con man’s way even if he is lethally deranged whereas Sgt Hoke Moseley could pass for Columbo’s scruffier brother That’s the way the late Charles Willeford whose mysterywriting career included four Hoke stories designed him: Hoke and Sonny Crockett come from different solar systems - They work the same beat however — it’s just that Hoke drives a wheezing ’60s-vintage Pontiac LeMans and likes to take out his upper plate when he’s relaxed To like this man you have to really hate the bad guy and everything has to click In Miami Blues the clicking is audible "n The trouble starts when a Krishna solicitor at Miami International Airport is found dead — of shock after a passerby has bent the Krishna’s finger back until it snaps Hoke knows who did it — it’s Junior whom he has tracked down through the call girl with whom Junior has moved in — but he also knows that a finger fracture is thin grounds for a homicide case So he drops in on the couple takes out his teeth then puts them MOVIE REVIEW THE VILLAINS: Alec Baldwin is the crook in Miami Blues while Jennifer Jason Leigh plays a hooker back in when Susie the hooker Qen-nifer Jason Leigh) cooks up her famous Okeechobee pork chops Hoke means to spook Junior and so he has: The next thing he knows Hoke has been mugged himself and has lost his gun his badge and the upper plate in the bargain He’s nearly a broken man Nearly Most of the rest of Miami Blues is about Hoke who lives in an unrestored South Beach hotel on the trail Tlosalie Goes Shopping is a consumer’s delight The following shortened review originally ran during February’s Miami Film Festival By BILLCOSFORD Herald Movie Critic J The splendid excess of the consumer age meets its living totem in Percy Adlon’s Rosalie Goes Shopping a blissfully goofy film It’s a pointed allegory too for the hulking Rosalie (Marianne Sagebrecht) is nothing if not a creature of the Reagan Age She burns the limits of her credit cards drops rubber checks all over town and keeps a secret stash of signature-forging implements for those tricky days when the bills come due Rosalie always plays the float And still: It’s not enough Rosalie drives around with vanity plates that read “CHRG IT” She’s a perfectly devoted wife and mother (Her husband is a nearsighted crop duster the kids include a pair of twins who do all things in sync and a nouvelle chef-in-training who is willing to cook absolutely anything) ‘ Actually Rosalie is the conventional one of the bunch She's a larcenous gal but she has her own code too: After each big score — and they get bigger as the film goes on — she goes to confession and pours out her soul to the local priest MOVIE REVIEW ROSALIE GOES SHOPPING (PG) y2 Cast: Marianne Sagebrecht Brad Davis Judge Reinhold Erika Blumberger Willy Harlander Alex Winter Director: Percy Adlon Producers: Percy Adlon Eleonore Adlon Screenwriters: Percy Adlon Eleonore Adlon Christopher Doherty Cinematographer: Bernd Heinl Music: Bob Telson A Four Seasons Entertainment release Running time: 94 minutes Vulgar language (Judge Reinhold) She has adopted the perfect logic of the times: “You admit your sins and they’re not sins anymore” Rosalie’s family enjoys watching TV of course but because they’ve perfected their consumer skills they don’t bother with the programs They wait for the commercials which they recite by rote in unison the perfect post-nuclear ensemble Rosalie Goes Shopping is wonderfully daft It doesn’t have much punch but it doesn’t need much You can laugh at Rosalie and her brood all you want but by the end you know that the joke’s not on her Angel Town so bad it’s bad 'By JUAN CARLOS COTO Herald Entertainment Writer Moviegoers need Angel Town like they need a kick in the head — it features yet another ex-martial arts champ trying to act Newcomer Olivier Gruner former world kick-boxing title holder from France stars as Jacques a graduate student from Paris single-handedly ridding an East Los Angeles neighborhood of a vicious Chi-cano street gang At the same time Jacques is working toward a degree in engineering He punches! He kicks! He defines the square root! If this sounds implausible it isn’t half as unbelievable as the actual film which is littered with contrivances and nonsensical plot twists Worse yet the action sequences are choreographed like bad training sessions Angel Town also stars Theresa Saldana as Maria a young mother living in the turbulent neighborhood Saldana who appeared in MOVIE REVIEW ANGEL TOWN (R) No Stars Cast: Olivier Gruner Theresa Saldana Frank Aragon Mike Morolf Director: Eric Karson Screenwriter S Warren Cinematographer: John LeBlanc Producer: Ash R Shah Music: Gil Karson An Imperial Entertainment release Running time: 85 minutes Violence vulgar language nudity gore Raging Bult — the film voted by critics as the best of the 1980s — is now in a movie that will be hard to beat as the worst of the ’90s The film has only one clever turn a paraplegic Vietnam veteran (Mike Moroff) who lives in the neighborhood and watches all the action cursing his crippled legs because he can’t help But this bit of irony seems accidental as does the fact that A ngel Town was even made I BOX OFFIC Here are the top movies at the : box office with distributor last weekend's gross number of weeks in release and total gross 1 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles New Line $ 1 4 1 million three weeks $729 million 2 Pretty Woman Disney $ 10 1 millon four weeks S593 million 3 The Hunt for Red October ' Paramount $426 million seven weeks S898milhoa 4 Ernest Goes to Jail Disney $425 million two weeks $ 126 million 5 The First Power Orion $38 million two weeks $ 1 17 million 6 Crazy People Paramount $34 million one week $42 million 7 1 Love You to Death Tri-Star $27 million two weeks $3 million 8 Driving Miss Daisy Warner Bros $22 million 18 weeks $904 million of Junior and Susie who have taken it on the lam — all the way from Miami to a love nest in Coral Gables It’s really not much when you stand back and look at it Except that Miami Blues has atmosphere it has tone and it has a fine menace to it Before it’s over the film spooks the rest of us too One reason is that Junior is a truly frightening villain in f the Willeford tradition — the Elmore Leonard tradition too for that matter in which the worst thing about the crooks isn’t their interest in evil but their ignorance of the concept and their indifference to it In one of the film’s running gags Junior makes his living by stealing from other criminals — pickpock-' ets crack dealers purse-snatchers He’s Robin Hood he says stealing ’ from the "rich” except that he doesn’t bother giving it to the poor That’s the funny part The scary part is that Junior is a remorseless killer too and Baldwin invests the character with an almost cheerful disregard for the pain of others If he doesn’t have to shoot you he won’t but it doesn’t take much to convince him he has to shoot you after which he will not give the matter a second thought Miami Blues spins some dark humor off Junior’s small but twisted MIAMI BLUES (R) - : Cast: Fred Ward Alec Baldwin Jennifer Jason Leigh Obba Babatunde Charles Napier Nora Dunn Paul Gleason Director: George Armitage Producers: Jonathan Demme Gary Goetzman Screenwriter: George Armitage Based on the novel by Charles Willeford -Cinematographer: Tak Fujimoto Music: Gary Chang An Orion Pictures release Running time: 97 minutes Vulgar language nudity implicit sex violence gore psyche and some more from the lure of power Junior feels once he has Hoke’s badge But what makes the film work isn’t the sense of humor George Armitage the director whose previous credits have hovered at the level of Vigilante Force and Hot Rod not to mention Private Duty Nurses has a kind of knowingness about the ways of lowlife and a sense for the chilling moment in the ordinary Most of Miami Blues takes place in broad daylight (like real crime) and it’s all the more unsettling for that Armitage gets fine performances too If you thought Baldwin was merely a pale Bond clone in The ‘ Hunt for Red October you have to see him here playing a psychopath Ward is good — he’s ultimately lovable and you cheer when he gets the teeth back And Leigh as the hapless Susie is perfectly dumb and splendidly hopeful All she wants is a man and a white picket fence by the ' time she realizes she got a killer in the bargain she’s almost beyond caring Miami Blues is a neat little trick — funny tough scary This hurts to say but it wouldn’t be so bad to see a Hoke Moseley sequel Sea of Love 1989 film just out on tape shows A1 Pacino at his best By HAL BOEDEKER Herald Television Critic Nobody gets angry the way A1 Pacino does His dynamic style electrified the Godfather movies Serpico and Dog Day Afternoon For almost a decade though his power was sapped by some dreadful movies from Cruising and Author! Author! to Scarf ace and Revolution His career looked like a blackout Last year he returned his full fury restored in Sea of Love The so-so murder mysterylove story just out on video owes its success to Pacino Without him it might as well be a movie of the week Pacino plays an antagonistic hard-drinking Manhattan detective ensnared in a strange love affair with a mysterious shoe saleswoman (Ellen Barkin) The shady lady wins his heart but will she stop its beating? You see she’s a murder suspect — an attractive murder suspect yes — but is she worth the trouble? The title Sea of Love doesn’t convey the plot a better one would have been Is My Lover a Serial Killer? It’s melodrama all the way but Pacino and Barkin enliven the proceedings with their desperate brand of chemistry The best scene is the prelude to their going to bed when Pacino spots a gun in her purse and flips out! It’s vintage Pacino Sea of Love released in September earned $56 million and re-established Pacino at the box office after a four-year absence Among the film’s pleasures is the ubiquitous John Goodman (Roseanne) giving a colorful supporting performance as Pacino’s partner The movie itself directed by Harold Becker ( The Onion Field Taps) and written by novelist Richard Price ( Bloodbrothers ) lacks Pacino’s force The reviews were decidedly mixed Bill Cosford of The Miami Herald said: “Pacino is the only real attraction His character feels ancient used-up bone-tired — vulnerable maybe but numb We need to see this in his face and Pacino can use his the way Tri-ple-A uses maps” Vincent Canby of The New York Times dismissed Sea of Love “The film is supposed to be a star vehicle but it’s more like a leaky radiator from which steam escapes without delivering heat” he wrote Kevin Thomas of The Los Angeles Times was more impressed calling it “a satisfactory end-of-summer diversion the kind of film that works as long as you ask nothing of it beyond simple escape” ‘Black Rain’ In the battle of the detective thrillers out this week on video Sea of Love definitely beats the tedious lengthy Black Rain Michael Douglas and Andy Garcia play New York detectives who return a killer to Japan and make a major mistake They turn him over to the wrong people! Douglas spends the balance of the violent movie caught up in a Japanese mob war Ridley Scott (Alien ) lays on the style but Black Rain drags and Douglas plays a crass charmless character There’s no escaping it: Despite all the arty touches Black Rain is a bore PACINO AS DETECTIVE: No one gets mad better than he does Still Bill Cosford wrote: “Scott’s work is always fascinating to watch even as it grinds you down And Douglas now has something heroic about him that enhances if it doesn’t quite transcend the plot-by-numbers It’s fun watching the two of them volley” Released in September the movie earned $44 million Garbo’s greats For video fans who’ve never seen a Greta Garbo movie do yourselves a favor and rent Ninotchka The delightful 1939 comedy shows the acclaimed actress who died Sunday in a rare comedy performance Among dramas 1937’s Camille and Queen Christina from 1933 show the great Swede at her best It’s an unfortunate result but actors’ deaths renew interest in -them Garbo who retired in 1941 and refused to play the public relations game was the most mysterious of all Hollywood stars She left her films to talk for her and now’s the time to listen GET THE NEWS FROM HOME WHEN YOU’RE IN SOUTH AMERICA CENTRAL AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN Taking a trip south? We'll be waiting for you The Miami Herald’s International edition flies to major cities in the Caribbean Central and South America every day Look for fresh copies at major hotels and newsstands Get the news from home when you’re away from home THE MIAMI HERALD Every day ten editions serve more than a million people in Florida and throughout the Caribbean Central and South America t 1 i

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