Although he’s finally begun to get his due in the past few years, Gene Hackman remains one of the more underappreciated actors of his generation. Released a year on either side of his career-best performance in Coppola’s The Conversation, Scarecrow (1973) and Night Moves (1975) provide prime examples of the surly loner persona Hackman cultivated through several key works of the ’70s. The buddy/road movie Scarecrow pairs Hackman with Al Pacino as a couple of drifters with big plans. In the noirish
Night Moves Hackman is an ex–football player turned private eye, charged with finding a young Melanie Griffith. Inexplicably semi-forgotten, like seemingly all of Arthur Penn’s films, save the epochal Bonnie and Clyde, it’s overdue for rediscovery. Included on the Night Moves disc: a “vintage featurette” with Penn.
Christina Ricci stars as a troubled young writer in this ill-fated adaptation of Elizabeth Wurtzel’s autobiographical novel, finally consigned to straight-to-video ignominy. So is it as bad as rumored? Well, let’s just say that the Ricci character has a poster for Bruce Springsteen’s 1987 Tunnel of Love album up—in 1985.
They Came Back
No ordinary zombie movie, the directorial debut of Time Out screenwriter Robin Campillo sees the dead come back—not to feast on human flesh, but just to get their old lives back.