HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
For the Sake of Vicious
Hell Bent
Straight Shooting
Jules Verne's Rocket to the Moon
Man They Could Not Hang, The
Final Days
Frightened City, The
Assimilate
Sequin in a Blue Room
Common Crime, A
Into the Labyrinth
Power, The
Wake of Death
Night Orchid
Mortal
Iron Mask, The
Dinosaur
Personal History of David Copperfield, The
Dove, The
Collective
Charulata
Minari
Violation
Defending Your Life
Champagne Murders, The
He Dreams of Giants
Lost in America
Take Back
Honeydew
Banishing, The
Drifters, The
Gushing Prayer
Escape from Coral Cove
Swan Princess, The
Shortcut
Stray
Butterfly Murders, The
Pimp
Feedback
Lady is a Square, The
   
 
Newest Articles
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
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
Network Double Bills: Some Girls Do and Deadlier Than the Male
Absolutely Bananas: Link on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
Adelphi Extras: Stars in Your Eyes on Blu-ray
Toons for the Heads: Fantastic Planet and Adult Animation
Nature Girl: The New World on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Perfect Friday and Robbery
Network Double Bills: The House in Nightmare Park and The Man Who Haunted Himself
   
 
  Last Exit to Brooklyn Love Will Tear Us Apart
Year: 1989
Director: Uli Edel
Stars: Stephen Lang, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Burt Young, Peter Dobson, Jerry Orbach, Stephen Baldwin, Jason Andrews, James Lorinz, Sam Rockwell, Maia Danziger, Camille Saviola, Ricki Lake, Cameron Johan, John Costelloe, Christopher Murney, Alexis Arquette
Genre: DramaBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Brooklyn in the early-to-mid fifties, and the community is suffering under the strike at the dockyard which has been going on for months with no end in sight. The shop steward for the union is Harry Black (Stephen Lang), and he is well known in the area for his rabble-rousing ways but recently has been taking his eye off the ball because he is embezzling petty cash from the union funds for his expenses. That is not all he should be worried about, as he is also finding his latent homsexuality beginning to emerge, so where will that leave him?

How about as a Jesus Christ stand-in for his final scene? Was that in Hubert Selby Jr's original novel? That book had been scandalous in its day, prosecuted in the British courts for one thing although it was eventually allowed to be read by the public, so as with all such controversial efforts a film version seemed an inevitability. And so it arrived, after some years in development, to some acclaim but not much in the way of box office receipts, suggesting if you really wanted to hunt down this material the most popular method would be to read that source book and not spend about an hour and a half with someone else's interpretation.

Although this Last Exit won the approval of Selby himself - he appears in a brief scene as a driver - fans of his work were not quite as impressed, although the fact they managed to bring it to the screen at all was an achievement in itself. It was not simply Harry's predicament which concerned us here, as there were other threads of plot to deal with too, all woven into a tapestry of degradation: mainly the stories of Burt Young's Big Joe, whose teenage daughter is about to give birth and the father doesn't know, having impregnated her on a one night stand; and Tralala (Jennifer Jason Leigh), a prostitute with a heart of lead.

These characters may have leaned towards the irredeemable in the book, but in director Uli Edel's movie he seemed intent on striking a note of hope in spite of much of the setting being closer to Hell on Earth than some kind of purgatory where you could emerge into salvation after your trials and tribulations. Nevertheless, that's where it all ends up, and if you couldn't accept that a set of narratives such as these could have the cheek to work themselves into a happy ending, then take a look at this. The theme was that once any character experienced something approximating pure love, that was their cue to be humiliated in the most personally harrowing manner possible.

Therefore Harry rejected his wife when she didn't do it for him anymore, and fell into the arms of a male prostitute who eventually rejects him when he turns needy, and Tralala meets a soldier who falls for her, offering an alien emotion to her which she cannot process, thereby leading to the infamous gang rape finale which we're meant to see she partly welcomes. Meanwhile that infernal style made itself plain in such scenes as the strike riot which looked to be taking place amongst the souls of the damned as the cops turn the hoses on them one night, and violence ensues on a grand scale. Trouble was, Last Exit to Brooklyn as a film had a very high opinion of itself, as if it was speaking profundities about the human condition when really it was seeing how extreme it could get while still allying itself to what, evidently in their opinion, was a literary classic. For that reason its pretensions to art played down the more deliberately revolting aspects, pulling this in two not entirely successful directions. Music by Mark Knopfler.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2036 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Uli Edel  (1947 - )

German director who deals in sometimes controversial subject matter. His first film was 1981's intense drug drama Christiane F , which brought him international notoriety; his next feature was the equally controversial Last Exit to Brooklyn. The erotic thriller Body of Evidence (with Madonna) was one of 1993's most derided films and most of Edel's other work has been in TV, including episodes of Twin Peaks, Oz, Tales from the Crypt and Homicide. Also directed the family hit The Little Vampire, true crime story The Baader Meinhof Complex, rap turkey Time You Change and Nicolas Cage horror Pay the Ghost.

 
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
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
Stately Wayne Manor
   

 

Last Updated: