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Please distribute this URL as you see fit. By Ted Baldwin {short description of image}
High Fidelity
Reviewed: started 4/9/00 finished 7/14/00

     Hilarious comedy in the vein of Ferris Beuller (as it was explained to me by a pal)

     John Cusack is perfectly on target, as are the other players in this sendup of dating, romance and top five lists.


The new boyband - The Five Cusacks.
Five possible.My writing was sucking so bad I laid off of it for a while. No inspiration, though the films have been good.
Tagline: A comedy about fear of commitment, hating your job, falling in love and other pop favorites.
     This tagline doesn't suck as much as the other ones on current films, but it still sucks.
John Cusack has turned in a terrific performance as a schmuck that does not know how to hang on to a girl.

- The ones who want him do not interest him at all.

- The ones who dump him, he wants.

If that sounds familiar from either side of the fence, you'll get this pic.

Cusack owns a record store (staffed by one of the most nauseating musical know-it-alls you ever met - actor Jack Black in an astounding performance). And into Cusack's life a little strange must fall.

Couched in terms of the most popular hit song lists, we are continually bombarded with Cusack's ideas of what the best songs are, period dependent, and what the best girlfriends were. Top Five Relationships of all time. Totally objectifying them in terms of what their appeal to him was, in a smugly ego-centric display of crass critique', Cusack delivers the inner workings of cluelessness wrapped in a thick imbroglio of trend and fashion.

Over the course of the film, we meet his ex-girlfriends, as he goes on this angst-latent search for himself. To analyze why he is miserable, he must return to the scene of the crimes - and extract the last drops of self-indulgent me-ism from the bodies in his wake.

This film is now a favorite of mine - taking root in about the last half. The kind I can watch and appreciate in snippets when it comes on late-night, and in a few years to look back and remember the first time I saw it. The wretched whining excesses of Cusack, the closed-loop mentality of the record store employees, the intractably unrelatable exes, the miasma of pop music and its adherents, the looming presence of Tim Robbins - Bad Guy, mysterious sexuality of strangers. Allure, demure sinecure.

As opposed to chicky flicky half-hearted obsequious posings, like in "Keeping the Faith", our hero suffers the consequences of his inability to relate, to be honest, to be relationship material. He wallows around in the most perverse self-pity, reaping the benefits of his sowing aplenty. And he deserves what he gets. But it is all watchable, and damned near engrossing.

He is a heartless heel, interested only in knowing why his latest love dumped him - and he's willing to spin the platters of those top five golden oldie relationships to discover what it is about himself that is just so darned unlovable. And thus revisits he the heartbreak upon unsuspecting souls who thought they had cleared him from their psychic day planners.

But darn it, you just like the guy.

And what rings true of course is obsession, inability to move on, pining for lost loves, self-seeking, using others and just plain old selfishness.


It is hilarious.


The website is good, with lots of fun stuff, screensavers, trailers, and pics.
Amusing, isn't it?

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