HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Settlers
Boy Behind the Door, The
Swords of the Space Ark
I Still See You
Most Beautiful Boy in the World, The
Luz: The Flower of Evil
Human Voice, The
Guns Akimbo
Being a Human Person
Giants and Toys
Millionaires Express
Bringing Up Baby
World to Come, The
Air Conditioner
Fear and Loathing in Aspen
Kandisha
Riders of Justice
Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Maki, The
For Those Who Think Young
Justice League: War
Fuzzy Pink Nightgown, The
Plurality
Scooby-Doo! Moon Monster Madness
Night of the Sharks
Werewolves Within
Honeymoon
King and Four Queens, The
Stray Dolls
Diana's Wedding
Deerskin
Toll, The
Two of Us
Nowhere Special
Rainbow Jacket, The
Crazy Samurai: 400 vs 1
First Cow
Undiscovered Tomb
Being Frank
Occupation: Rainfall
Jeanette: The Childhood of Joan of Arc
   
 
Newest Articles
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
Freewheelin' - Bob Dylan: Odds and Ends on Digital
Never Sleep: The Night of the Hunter on Blu-ray
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
   
 
  Hearts in Atlantis Way Back When
Year: 2001
Director: Scott Hicks
Stars: Anthony Hopkins, Anton Yelchin, Hope Davis, Mika Boorem, David Morse, Alan Tudyk, Tom Bower, Celia Weston, Adam LeFevre, Will Rothhaar, Timothy Reifsnyder, Deirdre O'Connell, Terry Beaver, Joe T. Blankenship, Brett Fleisher
Genre: Drama, Thriller, Science FictionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 2 votes)
Review: Bobby Garfield (David Morse) is a middle-aged photographer with a family now, but he is prompted to think back to his childhood days when he receives a letter from the town he grew up in telling him that one of his old friends has died and inviting him to the funeral. The news plunges him into the waters of rememberance, and he leaves his home behind, his wife and daughter vacationing, to travel to the funeral and pay his respects. After the service, he is catching up with an acquaintance when he asks about his childhood sweetheart Carol - but when told she is dead, he is understandably shocked...

The Stephen King collection of linked novellas Hearts in Atlantis featured four stories, and Low Men in Yellow Coats was the first of them, set in 1960. This is what was adapted for the film, not the actual story that bears its name which was a college-based tale about an out of control card game, and so star Anthony Hopkins was landed with giving a short speech about Atlantis and growing up with a broken heart by screenwriter William Goldman to explain away the title. But if there's one thing that this did right, it was to let Hopkins speak.

With his rich tones, the actor looked to be relishing the nostalgic glow of Bobby's reminiscences, recalling the time Bobby was an eleven-year-old boy and living with his single parent mother (Hope Davis) who was struggling to make ends meet. Into their lives arrived Hopkins' character Ted Brautigan, a mystery man who seems friendly enough, but whom Bobby's mother does not trust, having a poor opinion of males in general, including her own son. Of course, to Bobby this fellow might as well be Santa Claus, and he ends up reading the newspaper aloud for a small fee for Ted so he may save up for the bicycle his mother cannot afford for him.

Even with a fairly brief tale like this one, not a short story exactly but not the usual doorstep-sized King offering, director Scott Hicks struggles to contain the themes and atmosphere of the original, hitting various points along the way without much resonance. The King version was a part of his Dark Tower series - Brautigan turns up in one of the novels - but here it is kept vague about who precisely is tracking him down, the "low men" he warns of (although there are hints in this case they are from the government). In addition to reading for him, Bobby is instructed to watch out for these sinister chaps and report back to Brautigan if he notices anything.

But this is a coming of age tale as well, and the manner in which it is rendered with golden sunlight and a park where the children - Bonny, Carol (Mika Boorem) and Sully (Will Rothhaar) - play means that sentimentality elbows its way into what should be a clearer-eyed narrative. The darker elements are there and prevent this from drowning in a nostalgic treacle, with Bobby's mother raped by her boss on a business trip and Carol injured by the local bully, but the most interesting thing this has to say is its illustration of how authority can let you down and even damage you with their poor choices, whether it's those chasing Brautigan for his psychic powers, or Bobby's mother endlessly criticising his late father who might not have been a bad sort after all. But the yearning for a flawed yet vital past is there, laid on so thick that the film becomes helplessly morose. Music by Mychael Danna.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3010 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: