Video Review

Ballad Of Little Jo

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Details Movie Rated: PG-13; Genre: Drama; With: Suzy Amis and Bo Hopkins

Movies like this are why home video was invented. Maggie Greenwald's frontier drama about a young woman (Amis) who lived most of her life disguised as a man sank without a trace at the box office, yet it's the kind of tape that gets passed from friend to friend like a favorite novel. There's a New Age vapidity lurking around the fringes, but Amis' terse performance keeps Ballad Of Little Jo honest, and its portrait of an 1880s pioneer town in transition from muddy anarchy to awkward civilization is raw and real. An unvarnished winner. B+

Originally posted Mar 25, 1994 Published in issue #215 Mar 25, 1994 Order article reprints

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