Director: Michael Tolkin
Year Released: 1991
Bergman Lite. Michael Tolkin's much-discussed film is probably one of those things where those that don't get it (me) find the back-and-forth scrutiny over "implied meaning" and "spiritual power" wasted breath. No, I was not moved by the profound (?) "religiousness" of the movie, as I had a great difficulty in taking it seriously, unlike, say, Bergman's existential odyssey The Seventh Seal (shots of which still haunt me to this present day). Rogers plays the faltering crackup well, but all power from her performance is muted by a rather lackluster screenplay, which fails to add credibility to her plight, or gives her good dialogue to work with, or fully develops any of the supporting cast (the police officer and David Duchovny's respective characters are almost irrelevant). The film's message exists somewhere in purgatory - I failed to discern whether Tolkin is saying that excessive reliance upon religion is "misguiding" and "foolish" or a necessary step (is he simply pleading for moderation?). No matter - it isn't really worth thinking about anyway, as the ideas - which can be interesting - are tossed around haphazardly. I was entranced by the closing sequences, however - the arrival of the Horsemen of the Apocalypse is done with tact, and the jail scene is unforgettable - but it's all too little, too late. I'll stick to dancing along the cliffs with Death.