Picks and Pans Review: The End of Innocence

updated 02/04/1991 at 01:00 AM EST

originally published 02/04/1991 01:00AM

Dyan Cannon

Not only does Cannon star in this film. She wrote it. She directed it. She had her own personal makeup artist, her own hairstylist and her own clothes designer for it. If you sneak out into the lobby while the film is running, you'll probably find her selling overpriced candy too.

Cannon has always been an interesting actress, even in such second-line movies as The Anderson Tapes and Honeysuckle Rose. Nobody ever said, though, that she was as interesting as she'd have to be to make this movie entertaining.

Spike Lee, Warren Beatty and Woody Allen, to name a few other personalities, get away with ego-tripping like this on a regular basis. And Cannon's Renaissance-woman act wouldn't be offensive if this film weren't so inane. But it is a first-class washout, alternately abrasive and dull.

Cannon plays a raging case of arrested development, a woman of unspecified age, but clearly no kid (Cannon is 54), who spends most of her time whining and pouting about how mistreated she is by her insensitive parents and unfaithful boyfriend. She ends up with a drug problem that lands her in what seems to be the Cliché Acres Rehab Clinic, where her eccentric companions in therapy include a widow who carries her late husband's ashes around in a cigar box and talks to them and a man who keeps threatening to expose himself but never does (which, come to think of it, sums up just how daring this movie is).

John Heard plays the group's shrink competently, and Eric Harrison has a nice moment or two as a prissy gay patient. But Cannon may have been too busy with her makeup to monitor all the casting, since there is an amateur-night performance by Leslie Pam, a real life shrink, as the clinic director, and Lola (Paper Lion) Mason, as Cannon's mother, is annoyingly loud, nagging and unconvincing.

But then who could do anything with lines like these: "Writers, shmiters, does he have any money?" (Mason) "I wanna live and love, and I can't." (Cannon) "This ain't my life, it's yours, and if you're not going to fight for it, goddamn it, neither am I." (Heard)

Let's see the hands of those who haven't already guessed that Cannon will eventually learn to say no to her parents and brush off all the eminently brush-offable guys she seems attracted to.

Okay, now let's see the hands of those who think that the next time Cannon has a barn raising, she'd be better off inviting a few people over to help. (R)

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