Picks and Pans Review: No Place Like Home
updated 12/04/1989 AT 01:00 AM EST
•originally published 12/04/1989 AT 01:00 AM EST
In this powerful drama about homelessness directed by Lee Grant, Jeff Daniels and Christine Lahti play a working-class couple with two young children. They live from paycheck to paycheck, without a financial safety net. A fire sets them on a downward spiral that ends on the streets. Post-yuppies Daniels and Lahti are surprising casting choices for these roles. (What, Frederic Forest and Mare Winningham weren't available?) But both turn in sensitive performances as people growing increasingly desperate, scared and plain bone-weary. The film's brutal bad-to-worse scenario gets heaped too deep (rape attempts, a child turning to crack dealing, etc.). But No Place Like Home is a frightening reminder of how precipitously human dignity can be stripped away and of poverty's grinding self-perpetuation.