Director: Emir Kusturica
Year Released: 1993
Young romantic Axel (Johnny Depp), living in NYC and earning money tagging fish, goes with his cousin Paul (Vincent Gallo) to Arizona to attend his the wedding of his Uncle Leo (Jerry Lewis) to a much younger woman (Paulina Porizkova) - while out there, Axel falls in love with an eccentric older woman named Elaine (Faye Dunaway) to the great displeasure of her "daughter" Grace (Lili Taylor). For Kusturica - who comes from the deeply troubled former Yugoslavia - this is his loving jab at American Exceptionalism (and Innovation) and it's full of eccentrics: Depp has a recurring dream about a flying fish, Gallo longs to be an actor (but can only 'recreate' famous movie scenes), Dunaway's trying to build a plane and Taylor wants to kill herself and return as a turtle. This may sound a little funky, but the execution is (mostly) smooth and its inhabitants are warm and strange, and it only starts to get a little tiresome near the end, where I wish the Grace character met a better fate. Apparently there exists a four hour cut (that Kusturica gave to Depp), but this 140 minute one will suffice....