Daily Archives: August 30, 1994

A Simple Twist Of Fate

Apparently bent on following the Robin Williams route to success, Steve Martin stars in a contemporary soap opera from Disneywhich Martin himself loosely adapted from George Eliot’s Silas Marnerabout a hermetic furniture maker who adopts a baby girl deposited on his doorstep. As he is raising her the biological father (Gabriel Byrne), a local politician, demands custody of the child. There are only a few laughs here, and though the efforts to elicit tears show a certain amount of sincerity, Eliot’s 19th-century armature keeps poking through the proceedings, making them all seem faintly archaic. With Catherine O’Hara and Stephen Baldwin; directed by Gillies MacKinnon. (JR)… Read more »

Killing Zoe

Now I know what hip is: looking indifferent about whether the cat lying on the floor of your apartment is dead or not. Apart from this invaluable lesson, not a whole lot is going on here, and most of the moves are awfully familiar. Just as there’s a branch of filmmaking that could be called the school of Jim Jarmusch, this 1994 bank-heist thriller with a Paris setting, written and directed by Roger Avary, clearly belongs to the Quentin Tarantino school. (Avary once worked with Tarantino in a video store, and Tarantino serves here as executive producer.) Unfortunately it’s primary school; Killing Zoe has little of the style, pacing, characterization, or wit of Reservoir Dogs or Pulp Fiction (though Avary worked on the scripts of both). With Eric Stoltz, Julie Delpy, Jean-Hugues Anglade, Tai Thai, and Bruce Ramsey. (JR)… Read more »