Picks and Pans Review: Backtrack
Showtime (Sat., Dec. 14, 8 P.M. ET)
Jodie (Little Man Tate) Foster stars as an artist who takes it on the lam after witnessing a mob rubout. Dennis Hopper, who directed, plays a sort of Zen hit man who, as he stalks her, comes to see her as a kindred soul. The film begins sharply but soon goes off the tracks as Hopper grows more interested in showcasing lurid settings and odd behavior than in telling a story. At one point Foster, like Alice in Wonderland, hides in a scale model of a church on a miniature golf course. Both hunter and prey indulge in stilted soliloquies, she into a tape recorder, he into the ether.
With its black humor, casual violence and weird minor characters, this may be the year's most off-the-wall TV movie. It certainly has the most impressive cast: Fred Ward. Dean Stock-well, Joe Pesci, John Turturro and, in cameos, Charlie Sheen, Vincent Price and Bob Dylan.
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