Love and Death on Long Island

"Excellent"

Love and Death on Long Island Review


Blink and you missed this little gem, the story of an aging, British Luddite writer named De'Ath (as in the title of the film, John Hurt) who goes to America to seek his newfound muse -- a B-movie actor named Ronnie Bostock (Jason Priestley) who stars in films like Hotpants College II. Bizarre and touching, funny and poignant, this is one horribly titled film that really ought to be seen.

Hurt, as usual, pulls out all the stops on his vaguely pathetic, vaguely lovable role -- a stuffy gent who becomes inexplicably obsessed. The beginning of the film traces De'Ath's introduction into modern life, necessities generated so he can expose himself to Ronnie's work via VHS. He freeze-frames a locker room scene, listens intently for cheeseball lines like, "You're nothing but a skid mark on the underpants of life!" Finally he opts to move to Long Island in the hopes of encountering Ronnie face to face (along the way he rather humorously learns the difficulties of trying to get around suburban America by foot).

Eventually, De'Ath and Ronnie do meet, and his hopes for -- for what, fulfillment? friendship? a love affair? -- never quite come to be. Astute observers will recognize a lot of Gods and Monsters in this story, an equally good movie that nonetheless had more of a backbone to it.

Love & Death is also nearly singlehandedly responsible for reviving the career of Priestley, long in the doldrums. It subtly mocks his earlier career while hinting at better things to come. Priestley has yet to really fulfill that promise (though check out Coldblooded for more against-type work), but regardless of that, Love & Death stands well on its own as a quaint and touching little piece of celluloid.



Love and Death on Long Island

Facts and Figures

Run time: 93 mins

In Theaters: Friday 6th March 1998

Distributed by: Universal Pictures

Production compaines: British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), Arts Council of England, British Screen Productions

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 86%
Fresh: 32 Rotten: 5

IMDB: 7.0 / 10

Cast & Crew

Starring: as Giles De'Ath, as Ronnie Bostock, as Mrs. Barker, as Irving 'Irv' Buckmuller, as Audrey, as Lou, Gawn Grainger as Henry, Elizabeth Quinn as Mrs. Reed

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Julieta Movie Review

Julieta Movie Review

Iconic Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodovar is back with another powerfully complex female-centred drama, along the...

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

An astute satire of the pop music business, this raucous mock-documentary is consistently hilarious from...

War Dogs Movie Review

War Dogs Movie Review

Based on a rather astounding true story, this comedy-drama centres on two stoners who landed...

Swallows and Amazons Movie Review

Swallows and Amazons Movie Review

After a number of films, TV series and stage adaptations, Arthur Ransome's beloved 1930 novel...

David Brent: Life on the Road Movie Review

David Brent: Life on the Road Movie Review

The original BBC sitcom The Office ran for 14 episodes from 2001 to 2003, and...

The Childhood of a Leader Movie Review

The Childhood of a Leader Movie Review

Bold and intelligent, this dark drama is a challenging portrait of the making of an...

Pete's Dragon Movie Review

Pete's Dragon Movie Review

This hugely enjoyable adventure is a loose remake of the 1977 Disney hit that blended...

Advertisement
The Shallows Movie Review

The Shallows Movie Review

With a simple premise and plenty of visual style, Spanish filmmaker Jaume Collet-Serra (Unknown) takes...

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates Movie Review

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates Movie Review

Watching this gross-out comedy, it's clear that the gifted cast and crew had a great...

Nerve Movie Review

Nerve Movie Review

With a premise that feels almost eerily current, this stylish thriller revolves around a phone...

The Carer Movie Review

The Carer Movie Review

Brian Cox gets the role of a lifetime in this warm comedy about living life...

Born to Be Blue Movie Review

Born to Be Blue Movie Review

Writer-director Robert Budreau takes a stylised approach to this biopic of the legendary jazz artist...

Jason Bourne Movie Review

Jason Bourne Movie Review

It's been nine years since Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass collaborated on The Bourne Ultimatum,...

The Commune [Kollektivet] Movie Review

The Commune [Kollektivet] Movie Review

Veteran Danish filmmaker Thomas Vinterberg (Festen, The Hunt) returns to a smaller homegrown story after...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.