In Memoriam 1942 – 2013 “Roger Ebert loved movies.”

RogerEbert.com

Thumb large ouygaatyh4jzithj6fi3uyf31ri

Wonder

You’ll shed a tear or two—especially if you’re a parent—and they’ll be totally earned.

Thumb mv5bztg3yteznjytzty2ns00yjnmltlhnjutzti2m2e5ndi4m2njxkeyxkfqcgdeqxvymzi3mdezmzm . v1 sy1000 cr0 0 675 1000 al

Mudbound

The film invites us to observe its characters, to hear their inner voices, to see what they see and to challenge our own preconceived notions…

Other Reviews
Review Archives
Thumb xbepftvyieurxopaxyzgtgtkwgw

Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…

Other Reviews
Great Movie Archives
Other Articles
Chaz's Journal Archives
Other Articles
Blog Archives
Other Articles
Channel Archives

Reviews

Exit To Eden

  |  

There is a scene in "Exit to Eden" in which the hero butters Dana Delany's breast, sprinkles it with cinnamon, and licks it before taking bites from a croissant. I'm thinking: The breast or the croissant, make up your mind.

The whole movie is like that. It's supposed to be a kinky sex comedy, but it keeps getting distracted. On the first page of my notes, I wrote "Starts slow." On the second page, I wrote "Boring." On the third page, I wrote "Endless!" On the fourth page, I wrote: "Bite-size Shredded Wheat, skim milk, cantaloupe, frozen peas, toilet paper, salad stuff, pick up laundry." The movie is based on a novel by Anne Rice, who is said to know a lot about bizarre sexual practices. Either she learned it all after writing this book, or the director, Garry Marshall, just didn't have his heart in it. The movie is not only dumb and illconstructed, but tragically miscast. The actors look so uncomfortable they could be experiencing alarming intestinal symptoms.

Advertisement

You know me. I'm easy on actors. These are real people with real feelings. When I see a bad performance, I'm inclined to blame anyone but the actors. In the case of "Exit to Eden" I'm inclined to blame the actors.

Starting with Rosie O'Donnell. I'm sorry, but I just don't get Rosie O'Donnell. I've seen her in three or four movies now, and she has generally had the same effect on me as fingernails on a blackboard.

She's harsh and abrupt and staccato and doesn't seem to be having any fun. She looks mean.

In "Exit to Eden," she has the misfortune to star in a subplot involving an unnecessary, stupid, boring police investigation. The movie acts as if we care about this dumb case, involving a suspect who may be hiding out in an island resort devoted to S&M. I was reminded of those old nudist camp movies that pretended to be documentaries about volleyball.

Rosie and her partner, played by Dan Aykroyd, turn up on the island, which is managed by a woman named Lisa (Dana Delaney). Oh, it's quite a place.

They have a merry-go-round with humans instead of wooden horses. A sticky buns booth. Dialogue like, "Baking and bondage? I could do both?!" The male customers look like Chippendale dancers. The female customers look like mud wrestlers. Here is a typical exchange: "Wow! You're a CEO!" "Yes, I am." Come on, Garry Marshall, what's going on here? You're a smart guy. You made "The Flamingo Kid" and "Pretty Woman." Didn't you realize (a) that the whole police plot had to go, and O'Donnell and Aykroyd along with it? And (b) that sex is funny when it's taken seriously, but boring when it's treated as funny? What were your thoughts the first time Rosie turned up in the leather dominatrix uniform? Did you have maybe slight misgivings that you were presiding over one of the more misguided film projects of recent years? I don't know what kinds of people would sign up for a vacation resort that specializes in sadomasochism, bondage and discipline. But I imagine they'd want their money's worth. The lifeless, listless charades presided over by Delaney are practically family entertainment. The late Harriett Nelson could have attended this camp with only the occasional "Oh, my!" And of all the actresses I can imagine playing the role of boss dominatrix, Dana Delaney is the last. She's a cute, merry-faced type - perfect for the dominatrix's best friend. For the lead, let's see.

How about Faye Dunaway? Linda Fiorentino? Sigourney Weaver? See what I mean? Anne Rice recently took out two-page spreads in Variety and the New York Times to announce that she has seen the film of her novel "Interview with the Vampire," and thinks it is a masterpiece. I don't think we should look for her ad about "Exit to Eden," not even in the classifieds.

Advertisement

Popular Blog Posts

Why I Stopped Watching Woody Allen Movies

Stop watching movies made by assholes. It'll be OK.

“Call of Duty” and “Wolfenstein” Redefine the Modern WWII Game

A review of two of the biggest games of 2017, a pair that use World War II in very different ways.

Netflix's Marvel Spin-off "The Punisher" is a Lightweight

A review of Netflix's new Marvel series, "The Punisher."

The Messy Women of "Thor: Ragnarok"

Hela and Valkyrie are unusual for Marvel and blockbuster movies in general. Both are messy, complicated figures not n...

Reveal Comments
comments powered by Disqus