Director: John Cassavetes
Year Released: 1984
Brother and sister tandem have different views on love and relationships: the brother (Cassavetes) believes in transient pleasure, liquor and Las Vegas (he's a writer); the sister (Gena Rowlands) is so overly emotional she routinely collapses. Rowlands' woman well past the verge of a nervous breakdown seems like she's doing leftover lunacy from A Woman Under the Influence, and Cassavetes' Bad Dad routine is like Peter Falk in the same film - i.e. this is a little bit of J.C. remixing J.C. - but this is still strangely potent, mostly (I'm guessing) because of Cassavetes' odd rhythms and character development - he's our Poet Laureate of Domestic Dysfunction. He's also unorthodox in a way few filmmakers manage to be, allowing his 'creations' to have both black and white attributes - you're not sure if you like these people, but they feel like they're 'real enough' to believe in. The point of this - with the dual streams of love - is that both main characters' viewpoints are equally troubled, and that too much or too little amour is a bad thing.