The lost pleasures of ‘Rumble Fish’

 

Should the deeply baroque prospect of Mickey Rourke winning an Oscar come to pass in the wake of his turn in The Wrestler, hindsight might yet settle on a few of his vintage performances. There is, after all, plenty of gold among the clunkers – and yet I think there's a special poetry to Rourke's renaissance arriving on the 25th anniversary of Rumble Fish.

I'm not alone in having Francis Ford Coppola's adaptation of SE Hinton's tale of teenage gang wars and big brother worship on my mind – Bright Lights has also revisited the film, finding in it a cocktail of the "gorgeous" and the clumsy. Measured against conventional wisdom though, even that much seems generous; the film drifted into semi-obscurity long ago, too arthouse for popular tastes and too pop for the arthouse.

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Classic Movies, Commentary


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