Postcards from the Edge Reviews
Director: Mike Nichols
Summary: Carrie Fisher's scathing, hilarious and confessional novel -- adapted from her own best-seller about a woman (Meryl Streep) who becomes addicted to drugs while pursuing a Hollywood acting career -- makes a successful transition to the big screen. Shirley MacLaine enjoys her best role in years as Streep's self-absorbed mother, a faded movie queen who meddles in her daughter's affairs and doesn't believe time has passed her by.
My Thoughts: "How could you not want to see a film that has two great actresses as the leading ladies. Meryl Streep and Shirley MacLaine play mother and daughter, it doesn't get any better then this. They were both amazing in their roles of course. The film also has a very talented supporting cast, from Dennis Quaid to Gene Hackman and Richard Dreyfuss. Also a little cameo from Annette Bening. The film gives you a glimpse of the show biz world and what it was like for a daughter to not only grow up with a famous mother, but to also be in the spot light. The film has some great one-liners from Meryl's character Suzanne. It's funny in that dark comedy way. Which is exactly what this film is, a dark comedy. The relationship between mother and daughter is one of love and hate. The hate mostly coming from the daughter's end. The mother could be quite smothering at times. I thought it was a great film. One I wouldn't mind seeing again."
The opening moments are quite good, with Fisher's on-screen alter-ego personified here by Meryl Streep overdosing and being committed to a treatment facility. Streep is very good in those scenes, at first denying her substance abuse problem before admitting them to her herself and those around her. Those wonderful dramatic moments, however, are soon there after interspersed with more lighthearted moments and that's where my problem with the picture lies.
Taken separately, the comedy and the drama both work, they just don't mesh well together. In perhaps the film's best scene, the mood is perfectly set. It's the wonderfully melancholy moment in which Streep sings the Ray Charles classic "You Don't Know Me", and the wistfulness of that instance is never captured again. It finds just the right tone.
The behind-the-scenes Hollywood stuff is terrific as well, as director Mike Nichols systematically shatters the illusion of filmmaking, and the vast array of glorified cameos are fun as well. "Postcards From the Edge" often feels like two very different movies at war with one another. The dramatic film should have won.
Well, I didn't love it. I only liked it. I loved Meryl Streep's hilarious and gripping performance which earned an Oscar nom. Shirley MacLaine also gave a great performance.
Overall, it was a well conceived story, but it didn't hit home for me. And even though Meryl Streep can sing well for an actor, her singing did fit into the story for me.
Postcards from the Edge, I give you a 60%.