Eye For Film >> Movies >> Living Out Loud (1998) Film Review
Living Out Loud
Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray
What does an abandoned wife do in New York City, other than think hateful thoughts about her ex? She talks to herself for starters, calls a hunky masseur for a two-hour sesh in the buff, chats up an elevator operator, drinks more than is good for her and wanders down to the jazz club on the off chance some stranger might pull her into a dark corner and kiss her ragged (it actually happens, but he thinks she's someone else and it's all rather embarrassing).
They say this is based on a couple of Chekhov's shorter prose works. If so, everything was lost in translation. There are three or four stories swimming about, not connecting. The wife is going through a fading-fast-at-40 spiral that leads to pre-menapausal outrage, where the full force of feminist fury finds expression, when not fantasising about suicide.
The lady is played by Holly Hunter, looking like a million dollars. No wonder Danny DeVito, as the elevator man, has a cream cheese grin on his face. The jazz club interludes have no purpose other than to show off rap star Queen Latifah's talents as a cabaret artiste and the visit to a lesbian rave, where every Flashdance moment is accompanied by the sexiest girls from Central Casting, should be preserved for Alan Parker's coffee table publication, Gloss Is A Musical.
Richard LaGravenese has written memorable screenplays - The Fisher King, The Bridges Of Madison County, The Horse Whisperer. This time, on his directorial debut, he discovers that freedom needs reins and he's riding blind.Reviewed on: 19 Jan 2001