Picks and Pans Review: That Was Then...this Is Now
Emilio (St. Elmo's Fire) Estevez wrote the screenplay of this movie and plays the young punk who is its focus. He's more impressive as an actor than as a writer. For one thing, the dialogue is full of clunkers. For another, the film hinges on Estevez' moodiness, but we don't find out the reason for his rage—his dad shot his mom in an argument over him—until toward the end. This is supposed to be a film about growing up. Yet it becomes such a one-dimensional caricature of adolescent angst that it's hard to care what happens to Estevez. That's true even when he starts to unravel and his best friend, newcomer Craig Sheffer, deserts him to spend time with Kim (All My Children) Delaney. Despite some moving moments between Estevez and Sheffer, dull performances by Sheffer and Delaney don't help. This is the fourth S.E. Hinton novel about brooding youth to be turned into a movie. Tex was directed by Tim Hunter, The Outsiders and Rumble Fish by Francis Coppola. Christopher Cain did this one. You're not exactly ahead, fellas, but why don't you quit anyway? (R)
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