Picks and Pans Review: Always

updated 03/03/1986 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/03/1986 AT 01:00 AM EST

If this movie were a horse, you'd shoot it to put it out of its misery. Directed by Henry (Can She Bake a Cherry Pie?) Jaglom, who has a cult reputation for making personal films, this one is so personal that only Jaglom would want to see it. It is based on his real-life divorce from wife Patrice Townsend, and they play themselves. Townsend is a bright, gorgeous, touching actress; for her to have been stuck in Jaglom films is roughly equivalent to baseball Hall of Famer Ernie Banks having toiled away throughout his career with the futile Chicago Cubs. Jaglom is another story. He portrays himself as a sniveling, self-pitying jerk nobody would want to spend 30 seconds with, and he's totally convincing. The plot centers on Jaglom's attempt to lure Townsend back into marriage after a two-year separation. (If he really whined about it this much in real life, it's no wonder she went through with the divorce.) A party ensues, at which the only people who aren't foolish and/or loathsome are Melissa (All My Children) Leo, as Townsend's sister, and Jonathan Kaufer (he directed Soup for One) as the sister's boyfriend. Not since the beginning of recorded time have 105 minutes passed so slowly. (R)

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