Here’s where I try to convince you that the 80s comedy where Ann Magnuson falls in love with a John Malkovich robot is really great. Making Mr. Right, out today in a restored Blu-Ray from Kino, is a testament to the genius of its own maker, Susan Seidelman, who spent the 80s creating vibrant, wonderful, and colorfully-dressed worlds around silly studio comedy scripts. Mr. Right has plenty of bravura slapstick to satisfy the genre conventions (including an extended sequence of mall hijinks, always a good thing to put in your movie), but most importantly it has a universe you’d be thrilled to live in, one defined by New Wave fashions and deco (almost every major crew member on this, including Ed Lachman, also worked on True Stories, and you can tell) and everyday feminine rituals. Many movies could have Laurie Metcalf show up as a deranged woman tormenting John Malkovich, but only this one would care enough to show her fixing her hair before she bothers Malkovich.
Otherwise, we have Tony Scott’s The Fan, a much better “let’s rip off The King of Comedy and not bother to replace De Niro” movie than Joker, and Sarah Polley’s Women Talking, which I thought was powerful and genuinely thought-provoking (far beyond the “#BelieveWomen” bludgeon I’ve seen people accuse it of being) despite some problems, like that it looks like bathwater or that Ben Whishaw looks stupid in overalls.
Camille (Warner Archive Collection)
The Fan (Mill Creek)
The House That Screamed (Arrow)
I’ll Cry Tomorrow (Warner Archive Collection)
Making Mr. Right (Kino)
Mildred Pierce 4K (Criterion)
Secret Admirer (Kino)
Women Talking (Universal)