Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr Viber
Empire
Trending On Empire
The Big 2015 Movie Preview
The 50 Best Films Of 2014
Review Of The Year 2014
Download Ex Machina
Before the DVD release on 8th June
Subscribe To Empire
Sign up now and save 44%
Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
15
Cast
Kevin Bacon
Brad Renfro
Calista Flockhart.
Directors
Guy Ferland.
Screenwriters
Joe Eszterhas.
Running Time
101 minutes

LATEST FILM REVIEWS
Queen And Country
4 Star Empire Rating
Black Souls
4 Star Empire Rating
Station To Station
4 Star Empire Rating
She’s Funny That Way
2 Star Empire Rating
Accidental Love
1 Star Empire Rating



5 STAR REVIEWS
Look Of Silence
5 Star Empire Rating
Mad Max: Fury Road
5 Star Empire Rating
Still Alice
5 Star Empire Rating
Les Miserables
5 Star Empire Rating
Duke Of Burgundy, The
5 Star Empire Rating

Telling Lies In America
Rite-of passage drama set in the 60s.


submit to reddit


Plot
Karchy and father are pinning their hopes on the American Citizen Exams for the beginning of Karchy's bright future, but his coming-of-age pursuit of excitement, in the form of sex and a shady club scene, begin to lead him from the path perviously carved out.


Review
The initial impression given by this modest little movie is of another pop-musical period piece, tugging on the spangly coat-tails of That Thing You Do! and Grace Of My Heart. But where such nostalgia trips have bathed in an indulgent, rosy glimmer, a creditable air of earthy realism blows among these Cadillac fins and gelled quiffs, with shiny but shallow 60s pop a perfect metaphor for the tarnishing American dream. Such sensitivity is all the more surprising in that it issues from the pen of normally salacious scripter Joe Eszterhas.

This is coming-of-age, rites-of-passage stuff, with the focus on fame-hungry Karchy (Renfro). Following the usual rules of combat - pursuit of girls and sex, standing up for oneself, discovering the tricksy burden of morality - accepted teen troubles are made more awkward by his Hungarian descent and accent. And as the American citizenship exams he and his father are pinning their hopes on loom, Karchy wheedles his way into the employ of charismatic but shady DJ Billy Magic (Bacon), which may or may not be a smart move. All flashy front and broadcast patter, Bacon is in sly, effective form - his character as much an outsider as his youthful co-star's - with Renfro's equally solid performance backing up decent turns in Sleepers, The Client and The Cure, and securing him the current top spot among his generation. Maximilian Schell is rather wasted as Dr. Jonas, but Flockhart is rightly given greater room to shine than in The Birdcage as the reluctant object of Karchy's affections.

A carefully evoked and unhurried number that won't bring the house down, this nonetheless ends up being more absorbing than you'd think.


Verdict
A carefully evoked and unhurried number that won't bring the house down, this nonetheless ends up being more absorbing than you'd think.


Reviewed by Darren Bignell

Write Your Review
To write your review please login or register.


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
Classic Feature: The Change-Up
High-concept interview where Jason becomes Ryan and vice versa. Hilarity ensues

A Guide To Rick Baker: Monster Maker
Bidding farewell to a visual effects legend

Podcast #162: Hugh Laurie
Is there a doctor in the house?

Stoical Supermen: 10 Quiet Heroes That Get Stuff Done
Silent but deadly...

Ana Lily Amirpour On A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night
'There's nothing sexier than a vampire...'

12 Of The Weirdest Things Jean-Claude Van Damme Has Done On Camera
Outside of his movies, that is...

Spooks: An Oral History
Cast and crew on the spy smash

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Empire print magazine

Delivered to your door – with exclusive subscriber only covers each month!

Subscribe and save 44%

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Empire digital magazine

Exclusive and enhanced content – get instant access via your iPad or Android device

Subscribe and save 44%

Subscribe now and save up to 67%
Print, Digital & Package options available Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire Digital Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  Digital Edition  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)