James Wolcott

Articles by James Wolcott

New Age Cyrano

Jun 30, 1987 By James Wolcott

While Roxanne is steeped in friendliness, Summer Heat is full of humid clichés; Personal Services is too pleased with itself, but The Big Easy has a hang-loose, big-spender quality.

Extreme Imitation

May 31, 1987 By James Wolcott

Extreme Prejudice trips over its bloody missteps; Heaven climbs a staircase to the stars; Prick Up Your Ears delivers crisp witticisms and cruisy pickups; Ishtar completely lacks l’amour.

Trailer Trash

Apr 30, 1987 By James Wolcott

Everyone in Raising Arizona has a libido for the ugly, and the guys in Tin Men can’t see past their hood ornaments; Hollywood Shuffle loses its hip mind; Street Smart has a crazed, electric menace.

Tuned Out

Apr 1, 1987 By James Wolcott

Radio Days is a nostalgic doodle; Black Widow needs fewer poses and more cheap lust; Dead of Winter is spookhouse-scary—but schlocky; The Good Wife is soapy yet strangely affecting.

Epic Embroidery

Mar 1, 1987 By James Wolcott

The action in Platoon is brilliantly sustained, but The Mission falls with a stately thud; The Bedroom Window aspires to be as spellbound as an Alfred Hitchcock, but The Defense of the Realm is the engrossing thriller.

Scratch Shot

Dec 1, 1986 By James Wolcott

The Color of Money veers off into technique; Police goes flaccid; Menage succumbs to mystification; Round Midnight reduces jazz to a dirge; Something Wild has a lurid kick.

Ball of Glitter

Nov 1, 1986 By James Wolcott

Technologically, Captain EO is a marvel, but the plot is banal to the point of retrograde; Touch and Go has drive and laughs; True Stories has no stories; The Men’s Club is a stag party with pretensions; Shanghai Surprise is a passable waste of time.

Dagwood As D.A.

Jul 31, 1986 By James Wolcott

Legal Eagles is guilty of being humdrum and hokey; Mona Lisa has some fine, gracing touches; Vagabond finds purity within the dirtiest packaging.