Keith Gordon

Director of the original Seven Up.

Mother Night (1996) -- In Back To School -- a movie starring Keith Gordon as Rodney Dangerfield's son -- Kurt Vonnegut makes perhaps his most famous cameo.  Ten years later, Keith Gordon adapts one of Vonnegut's best books and does a pretty good job.  It takes a while for the movie to realize it's supposed to be funny, but once it find the balance between humor and seriousness, it works--even if the adaptation is sometimes too "by the book" (as opposed to the artistic choices George Roy Hill made for the more successful Slaughterhouse-Five).  Nick Nolte, Sheryl Lee, Alan Arkin, John Goodman (who brightens up the screen with his rare appearances) do great jobs.  Nick Nolte deserves extra credit for bringing life to a character who is essentially passive, and he arguably creates a better character than Vonnegut did in his 1961 book.  There's also a young Kirsten Dunst in this movie and yet another Vonnegut cameo. B

Copyright (c) Mar 2006 by Rusty Likes Movies