Picks and Pans Review: A Small Circle of Friends
The biggest problem with this film about a love triangle and coming of age at Harvard in the late '60s is that, like the '60s, too much happens in too little time. In 112 minutes director Rob Cohen nods at Vietnam, the Weathermen, President Johnson, diaphragms, women's lib, masturbation, student strikes, bisexuality and brutal cops—leaving the characters little breath to become more than stereotypes. Brad (Midnight Express) Davis, however, brings some subtlety to his role as the streetwise kid encountering the Ivy League, and there's a tearjerker death scene. Though this basically admirable film blends history and Hollywood uneasily, it doesn't sink to the level of a chillingly glib comment by its screenwriter, Ezra Sacks, who has remarked that "politics was the disco of the '60s." (R)
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