Monday, November 12, 2012

Twice in a Lifetime (1985)

Synopsis: Blue-collar bloke bangs busty, bimbo barmaid, breaks blissful bond, bothers ball-and-chain.

Blurb From the VHS Jacket: “’It’s been a long time since I haven’t known for certain what a day had in store for me,’ laments 50-somethign steel worker Harry Mackenzie (GENE HACKMAN). His thirty-year marriage to wife Kate (ELLEN BURSTYN) has lost whatever zest it once had. Harry’s lust for life is rekindled by an affair with Audrey (ANN-MARGRET), a local, recently widowed barmaid.”

What Did I Learn?: 1) Ladies, if it’s your husband’s birthday and he wants you to join him for drinks at the local watering hole, don’t go to bed and tell him to “have fun”. 2) Amy Madigan is not a good actress.

Really?: 1) I had a hard time believing a 20-something woman would confront her father about his extramarital affair in a skuzzy bar, let alone bring her very young daughter along for the fireworks. 2) What was the point of having Hackman wear an old Army jacket when there’s never any mention that he served?

Rating: Twice in a Lifetime is an ok character-driven drama about a steelworker who ditches his comfortable-yet-loveless marriage for a spicy affair. There’s lots of star power and some good performances (watch for Ally Sheedy – this is the movie she did right after St. Elmo’s Fire), but Twice in a Lifetime doesn’t really have a third act, and it often feels like a made-for-TV flick. By the end, I was a little bored. 6.5/10 stars.


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