HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Last Moment of Clarity
Fukushima 50
Dreams on Fire
Sing as We Go!
Burnt Orange Heresy, The
Craft Legacy, The
Eye of the Storm
Inflatable Sex Doll of the Wastelands
Where No Vultures Fly
Come True
Kagemusha
Justine
Poly Styrene: I Am a Cliché
Madchen in Uniform
Fire Will Come
Suspect
Jailbreak Pact
News of the World
Dementer
Beyond Clueless
Stylist, The
Sky is On Fire, The
Wrong Turn
In a Year with 13 Moons
Blush
Strange Affair of Uncle Harry, The
Sinners, The
Tammy and the T-Rex
Archenemy
Zappa
Mindwarp
State Secret
Mogul Mowgli
Owners, The
Twentieth Century, The
Story of Gilbert and Sullivan, The
What Lies Below
Greenland
Broil
Dead Pigs
   
 
Newest Articles
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
Newley Minted: The Strange World of Gurney Slade on Blu-ray
Bad Love: The Night Porter on Blu-ray
Brevity is the Soul of Weird: Short Sharp Shocks on Blu-ray
Get Your Ass to Mars: Total Recall on Blu-ray
Call the Professionals: Le Cercle Rouge on Blu-ray
When There's No More Room in Hell: Dawn of the Dead on Blu-ray
   
 
  U Turn Turn Up The Heat
Year: 1997
Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Sean Penn, Jennifer Lopez, Nick Nolte, Powers Boothe, Billy Bob Thornton, Joaquin Phoenix, Claire Danes, Jon Voight, Julie Hagerty, Brent Briscoe, Bo Hopkins, Valeriy Nikolaev, Laurie Metcalf, Ilia Volok, Aida Linares, Sheri Foster, Annie Tien, Liv Tyler
Genre: Drama, ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Bobby Cooper (Sean Penn) is driving through Arizona, the desert specifically, and enjoying the trip thanks to the drink and drugs he is taking, but then mishap strikes as the sports car suffers engine trouble. It limps into the nearest garage in the small town of Superior where he finds the mechanic (Billy Bob Thornton) and persuades him to take a look at the problem, but the mechanic tells him it will take him all afternoon to get to grips with it, leaving Cooper at a loose end. It's typical, he was on his way to pay off a debt that has already seen him lose two fingers and his tennis career, and he would finally have been free of his issues, but it looks like bad luck cannot leave him alone...

After a run of bombastic nineteen-nineties hits, director Oliver Stone settled on making a smaller film with a no less starry cast, which promptly flopped, thus effectively ending his run of box office success. He would have middling hits subsequently, but thereafter became largely known for his name and his aggressive political stance as he did for his film work, which would include precisely that stance. Yet with U Turn, there was none of the point-scoring that characterised much of the other entries in his filmography, as more or less this was his updating of the classic film noir format to a nineties approach, something that was highly popular in the Hollywood of that decade.

To an extent, the fatalism that film noir depicted was well-suited to Stone, who delivered a "shit happens" mood to the proceedings that was keen to antagonise its protagonist as far as possible, so much so that you could be forgiven for thinking the director believed he was creating a comedy here. It was accurate to observe a certain bleak humour in the twists and turns of that plot, which was determined not to let Cooper off the hook as he became trapped in Superior, its inhabitants finding an endless series of ways to wind him up to snapping point. There was a very fine cast performing in these quasi-caricatured roles, overqualified in some cases, you may suspect.

Not that anyone here begrudged the opportunity to let their hair down in what amounted to pulp fiction of a sort Quentin Tarantino had firmly set in vogue three or four years before, though stories reached the press of Stone and Penn, two talents who had very clear views of how they wished to go about things, clashing daily. You would detect little of this on the screen as they each appeared to be on the same page, and the notion of them arguing till blue in the face over plot points and character choices seemed absurd in light of how closely this hewed to well-mounted trash cinema, but perhaps a little friction behind the scenes was not too bad for a thriller. It was there in Penn's performance, a combination of nervy intensity and world-weary resignation that the fates were conspiring against him.

The main plot strand led Cooper to Jennifer Lopez as Grace, trophy wife of local businessman Nick Nolte, and at two different times they requested Cooper to help them out by murdering the other, with the promise of a hefty bonus in cold, hard cash the carrot dangled before him: when his own stash of cash goes AWOL, it was almost classical in its structure for a hero dragged down into Hell by his flaws and those flaws of the people around him that he was powerless to resist. Also showing up were Powers Boothe as the local lawman who turns up whenever it looks like Cooper will not escape his trouble, until... well, that would be telling; Joaquin Phoenix and Claire Danes as a young couple driven by his pathological jealousy; and Jon Voight in a "why is he here?" role as a blind beggar and Vietnam War veteran (because it was an Oliver Stone flick). Some found this too frustrating to watch, others disliked how it punished Cooper way past the stage of being sensible, but in its overblown manner, U Turn was preferable to many of its maker's message films. Eccentric score by Ennio Morricone.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1016 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Oliver Stone  (1946 - )

Didactic, aggressive and in-your-face American writer-director who, after directing a couple of horrors (Seizure and The Hand) and writing Midnight Express and Scarface, settled into his own brand of political state-of-the-nation films like Salvador, the Oscar-winning Platoon, Wall Street, Talk Radio, JFK, Natural Born Killers and Nixon. Slightly out of character were The Doors and U-Turn: respectively, a celebration of the late sixties and a sweaty thriller. In 2004 he experienced his biggest flop with Alexander, a historical epic, but followed it with the reverent World Trade Center and a biopic of then just-leaving President George W. Bush. A belated sequel to Wall Street and gangster movie Savages were next. Say what you like, he has made his mark and loads of people have an opinion on him.

 
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
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Stately Wayne Manor
Enoch Sneed
  Geraint Morgan
   

 

Last Updated: