Features

Air Bawl

Sometimes, despite the finest efforts, a would-be tearjerker misses the mark and emerges as just one more failed duct manipulator.

The English Patient (1996) The eight-hour (Just three hours? Really? Are you sure?) winner of enough Oscars to fill a camel's hump elicited tears only because I kept thinking I had sand in my eye.

Captain Corelli's Mandolin (2001) Yes, Nicolas Cage is Italian. But never in a million years will he pass for an Italian from Italy. And so we don't buy the love between Corelli and his Greek lass (Penelope Cruz, who is from Spain, which is kinda far from Greece). Curious casting killed the ''Captain.''

Doctor Zhivago (1965) All the elements of an epic romance are here: Omar Sharif looking all Sharif-y as the surgeon in love with Julie Christie's Lara; the masterful camera work of Mr. Vista himself, David Lean; a heady backdrop of revolution. But all we feel afterward is kinda chilly.

Patch Adams (1998) Enough to make a fella wish that doctor-patient privilege extended to crass true stories about medics who heal with laughter and fake clown noses. Bad, Robin Williams!

Untamed Heart (1993) Why? Because he thinks he's got a baboon heart. Anything involving baboons isn't sad, it's funny.

Originally posted Nov 28, 2003 Published in issue #739 Nov 28, 2003 Order article reprints
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