Tuesday, August 09, 2011

PEGGY SUE GOT MARRIED (Francis Ford Coppola, 1986)

Back to the Future for disillusioned 80s housewives. Never mind the usual qualms about time travel movies* - just as basic storytelling, this one is weirdly erratic and disjointed. Key scenes seem to be missing and various emotionally charged conversations have no impact on the relationships involved since the characters seem to have forgotten them when they pop up five minutes later.

Several people in the cast are under the unfortunate impression that they have the lead role, while Kathleen Turner hacks away at her big closeups with all the gusto of Charles Busch in Susan Hayward mode.

Like a lot of sunny 80s tackfests, this one is fun to revisit in a half-nostalgic, half-ironic way. But if I was watching it 1986, I'd be pretty confident it's a piece of shit.

* e.g. why would you keep talking about people standing in front of you in the past tense and why won't anybody pick you up on it? why wouldn't you run to the police and warn them to take special care with the president in Dallas in November 1962? why do people in the 60s have hairstyles from the 80s? what are all these 36 year olds doing in a classroom? what made Peggy Sue's whitebread all-American parents adopt an awkward, expressionless girl from southern Italy? how could those sketchy, unhinged actorly tics evolve into something that could net Nicolas Cage an Oscar? The mind boggles.

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