Vincent D’Onofrio plays Valentino, AIDS-stricken former porn star who is the centre ofa subcultural social whirl in NYC. He splits his affections between male prostitute Thomas Janeand in-your-face-and-then-some waitress Salma Hayek. As the disease takes its toll, Jane andHayek must overcome their differences to support D’Onofrio. Then there’s the fact that Hayekis pregnant…
The film is very affectionate toward its collection of flamboyantly non-mainstreamcharac…ers, but it is also cut very much of the same cloth as so many gay-themed 90s films:everybody is FAAAABULOUS and witty, but the Dark Cloud of AIDS is destroying everything.There is fun to be had in the exchanges, but the soap opera is pretty familiar stuff.
An excellent 5.1 mix, at least as far as the surround effects are concerned. They kick in fromthe opening frame, and stay strong, whether the effect be the spray of water from a fire hydrant inthe opening shot, or the pinging of an off-screen pinball machine perfectly placed in the rearspeakers. The sound is a bit too rear-heavy though, particularly when it comes to the music, whenthe rear speakers drown out the front.
The 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen picture is extremely sharp, and a pleasure to watch. Thecolours are strong and backed up by well-nigh perfect contrasts, so the night scenes are as vibrantas the well-lit interiors. The flesh tones are excellent too, and there is no visible grain or edgeenhancement. Whatever else one might say about the film, it is very visually lively, and thiscomes through beautifully in the transfer.
Trailers for Once Upon a Time in Mexico, The Opposite of Sex andPhiladelphia. The menu is basic.
Familiar yet brave, the film is a mixed bag. But if you like this sort of thing, you’ll really likethis one. Recent fans of Thomas Jane, or more specifically of Deep Blue Sea and ThePunisher, might be a bit discomfitted.
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