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Close to Eden

There's a kind of loopy fiction yet anthropological honesty to this Russian-made (and French-produced) movie set in the isolated steppes of Chinese Inner Mongolia. Modern...

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, May. 7, 1993

Three of Hearts

Though fashioned like an old-time screwball comedy, Three of Hearts' presentation of its central love triangle is thoroughly contemporary. A rejected lover hires an “escort”...

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, May. 7, 1993

Full Contact

While it may lack the self-assured, stylistic integrity of John Woo's films, this recent Hong Kong import more than makes up for it in its...

Marc Savlov, Review, May. 7, 1993

The Night We Never Met

If this were only slighter, it might be more substantial. Brian (Anderson) is getting married and has already moved in with his girlfriend. In order...

Louis Black, Review, May. 7, 1993

Splitting Heirs

Splitting Heirs starts with a truly awful title pun and goes downhill from there, proving once again that Michael Palin is really the only Python...

Marc Savlov, Review, May. 7, 1993

Bound by Honor

“No Baptist sermon, eh?” So crack the young heroes of this saga of Chicano brotherhood whenever they feel they're being lectured. And as often as...

Robert Faires, Review, May. 7, 1993

Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story

Though it could hardly be termed a stroke of luck, the timing of this Bruce Lee film bio could hardly be better. Ever since his...

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, May. 7, 1993


Scrambling after the Frank Capra crown, Ivan Reitman offers up Mr. Prisoner of Zenda Goes to Washington, a charming political comedy. Small-time actor and employment...

Louis Black, Review, May. 7, 1993

Like Water for Chocolate

Like Water for Chocolate, a simmering cauldron of romance and revolution, passion and purity, mysticism and witticism, is a powerful and heady brew. Based on...

Hollis Chacona, Review, May. 7, 1993

Ishi: The Last Yahi

This wonderful, award-winning, hour-long documentary is an absorbing, eye-opening look at the dichotomous American obsession with “savagery” and “civilization.” It recounts the history of the...

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, May. 7, 1993


Set in the racial melting pot of Queens, New York in 1954, Turturro's autobiographical tale is loosely based on the life of his father, a...

Marc Savlov, Review, Apr. 30, 1993

Blue Planet

Winner of numerous awards, including the Nastro D'Argento (Italy's equivalent to the Academy Awards) and the United Nations Award for Film and Television, this 1981...

Pamela Bruce, Review, Apr. 30, 1993

This Boy's Life

This Boy's Life is based on author Tobias Wolf's autobiographical memoir about growing up in the Fifties in the company of his divorced and seemingly...

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, Apr. 30, 1993

The Dark Half

For all twelve of you out there who didn't read Stephen King's book while it lingered on the Times best-seller list for several months, this...

Marc Savlov, Review, Apr. 30, 1993


Somewhere near the end of this indie feature about the lifestyles and foibles of the young and uncommitted, a character exasperatedly exclaims: “You can't change...

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, Apr. 30, 1993

Volere, Volare

Much in the same manner as Roberto Benigni's Johnny Stecchino, Nichetti's Volere, Volare joins the growing trend of Italian films that puts a Latin spin...

Pamela Bruce, Review, Apr. 30, 1993

Indian Summer

I've short-sheeted beds and belted out camp songs with the best of them. Indian Summer made me long to be back in one of those...

Hollis Chacona, Review, Apr. 30, 1993

Once Upon a Time in China II

Funny thing about Chinese film sequels: they tend to be better than their originals. Take this one for example. Whereas Once Upon A Time in...

Marc Savlov, Review, Apr. 30, 1993

Who's the Mannull

The opening barber shop scene in this film promises a devilish trip through the world of Harlem street and shop life. As the camera wanders...

Louis Black, Review, Apr. 30, 1993

Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography

If you can get past that RTF 301 title, what you'll find here is an extremely engrossing meditation on an aspect of most films that...

Marc Savlov, Review, Apr. 30, 1993

Boiling Point

Gerald Petievich's novels are usually tensely atmospheric thrillers that feed on themselves, layering scenes, characters and dialogue until Los Angeles, the city that seems to...

Louis Black, Review, Apr. 23, 1993

Peking Opera Blues

Deception and betrayal in culture and politics take center stage in this splendid narrative that shifts between farce and violence, suspense and emotionality.

Pamela Bruce, Review, Apr. 23, 1993

Ethan Frome

Based upon the novel of forbidden passion and despair in the grim, frostbitten rural life of 19th-century New England, the cinematic version of Ethan Frome...

Pamela Bruce, Review, Apr. 23, 1993


Riff-Raff is a comedy/drama with a ferocious social conscience. As seen through the eyes of a Scottish working class stiff biding time on a London...

Steve Davis, Review, Apr. 23, 1993

Discrète, La

Like fellow countrymen Eric Rohmer and Francois Truffaut, newcomer Vincent has a razor keen eye for the tiny, seemingly trivial details that most people never...

Marc Savlov, Review, Apr. 23, 1993

Dead Alive

The Citizen Kane of Oedipal zombie-cannibal-right to death-comedy-love stories. In this early film, Jackson takes the shopworn flesh-eating zombie genre by its rotting horns, adds a dash of Monty Python, and comes up with a film so gleefully over-the-top that it's decidedly hard not to gag while you're laughing yourself incontinent.

Marc Savlov, Review, Apr. 16, 1993

Just Another Girl On the I.R.T.

It's safe to say that you haven't seen many characters like Chantel (Johnson) in the movies before -- an African-American teenage girl who dreams of...

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, Apr. 16, 1993

Benny & Joon

Naïf meets waif in this touching yet whimsically unrealistic tale of love amongst society's write-offs.

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, Apr. 16, 1993

Ladro Di Bambini (Stolen Children), Il

Set in and around Milan, Italy, Il Ladro de Bambini follows the journey of a young, idealistic army officer (Verso) and the two young children...

Marc Savlov, Review, Apr. 16, 1993

The Adventures of Huck Finn

It's hard to know who might be the targeted audience for this seventh film adaptation of Mark Twain's classic novel. Some of the material is...

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, Apr. 9, 1993

Female Misbehavior

Female Misbehavior is a compilation of four short documentaries by feminist film director Monika Treut (Seduction: The Cruel Woman, Virgin Machine, My Father Is Coming)....

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, Apr. 9, 1993

Indecent Proposal

Money can't buy you love but it can get you a reasonable facsimile thereof. In Indecent Proposal, a billionaire slumming in Las Vegas tests this...

Steve Davis, Review, Apr. 9, 1993

The Sandlot

The movie is a grown man's memory of his first, awkward summer in a new neighborhood in 1962 and the importance of baseball as a bonding activity.

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, Apr. 9, 1993

Jack the Bear

Jack the Bear is a bear alright -- at times warm and cuddly like a panda but still a beast that you might not want...

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, Apr. 9, 1993

Project A -- Part II

Apparently quite a few people think this is one of Chan's best films. I guess I'm not one of them, because I still think that...

Marc Savlov, Review, Apr. 9, 1993

Cop and a Half

Most of you will have to take my word for this, because only the utterly irrational will find a reason to see this movie, but...

Louis Black, Review, Apr. 9, 1993

The Crush

With plot holes so large you could drive a HumVee through them, this debut film from director Shapiro is little more than a lousy hybrid,...

Marc Savlov, Review, Apr. 9, 1993

The Match Factory Girl

With not even 70 minutes total running time and, seemingly, not more than two dozen total lines of dialogue, The Match Factory Girl spins a compelling narrative, a devastating cultural portrait, and an object lesson in the less-is-more school of storytelling.

Marjorie Baumgarten, Review, Apr. 2, 1993

Man Bites Dog

Is it a comedy? A documentary? An underground gore-fest? Man Bites Dog, the first feature film from Belgian director Rémy Belvaux, is all of these...

Marc Savlov, Review, Apr. 2, 1993

Married to It

The failures of this awkward melodrama are so obvious -- you stop little short of hissing at the villains -- and so abundant that prudence...

Louis Black, Review, Apr. 2, 1993

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