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Tommy Lee Jones and Jessica Lange star as a couple during the 1960's, Hank and Carly Marshall
nuclear bombs have been tested in the field and they both get caught up in a top secret government project that could potentially ruin them
it also doesn't bode well that Carly is bi-polar and a bit unsound
still, Hank is willing to let her behavior slide from time to time and hope for the best for their two daughters
it might be only a matter of time before Hank's position is compromised
but it doesn't mean that Carly is completely oblivious to the damage she leaves behind, she's been called crazy and worse her whole life
two fantastic leads in their prime, soothing music, and a bit more dramatic than you'd ever expect it to be
I actually really enjoyed the daughters' interactions too, they're growing up in the world surrounded by changing insane times so they're able to deal with their mother and her numerous shortcomings
love is like properties that change constantly, it's almost like water changing to ice back and forth but it's still the same, officials will do almost anything to sweep their secrets under the rug to carry out their duties, when it comes to testing powerful new weapons the information is sensitive and dangerous therefore speaking of it could end badly, just because a woman is beautiful and grabs everyone's attention it doesn't make her bad or a floosey, she can strip for a living but anything else she's considered a scandal
a film that shows how strong love can be over any army or official government authority
Jones and Lange's performances truly soar
Considering Tony Richardson's stellar reputation I expected that his films would live up to the hype but after having seen both Tom Jones (1963) and Blue Sky I am confused by how he got to keep making films. This is a movie that doesn't know what it is, is it the story of a girl's coming of age? A dissolving marriage? A military cover up? It never settles on one of these stories and is one of those icky films settled around an insufferable character whose sins we are meant to forgive because they take one erratic action at the end of the film. The element that this film is most remembered for is Jessica Lange's performance but she goes down as one of the worst actresses to win Best Actress in my view after seeing this film.
Nuclear engineer Hank Marshall, Tommy Lee Jones, is married to the mentally unstable Carly, Jessica Lange, who goes crazy when they move to Alabama after having had a period of relative calm when living in Hawaii. Carly flirts with Hank's co worker Vince Johnson, Powers Boothe, which prompts her to have an affair, a move that proves to be too much for her family. Marshall is sent to a mental hospital after the project he had been working on, "Blue Sky", is sabotaged by the presence of civilians when the bomb is set off. Carly is able to reveal the truth to the world and reconciles with her family.
The music in the film was one of the things that irked me most as we get electric guitar playing at every moment from the Marshalls having sex to Carly's daughters complaining to her. It felt so out of place in a film that goes to great effort to show that it is set in the 1960s, why would music that sounds like it's from the mid 1990s be playing all the time? It is one of the many things that takes you out of the film completely. From that point on you notice that all of the technical elements of the film are slightly off as the film is shot in a chaotic style that doesn't let you focus on one action for long enough to care. The film's cinematography is unimpressive and as previously stated the director does not seem to have any real vision of what his film is actually about.
The performances were also all over the place as Jones is solid but gives a performance that he has given in so many of his other films and he isn't used as well as he had been in Coal Miner's Daughter (1980) and Eyes of Laura Mars (1978). What a shame then that he is completely let down by the awfulness of Lange. She isn't my favorite actress but she was decent in Titus (1999) and Sweet Dreams (1985) so I expected her to be able to do something with what should have been a juicy role. She is absolutely terrible as she gives the worst performance I have seen since Katharine Hepburn in The Lion in Winter (1968), she chews scenery in every moment but it's not great fun to watch it's just a show of poor acting. Judy Davis or Dianne Wiest could have really done something with this role, as oddly written as it is, although they are not beautiful blondes. I think that Lange did not deserve her Academy Award because despite the fact that the performances nominated for Best Actress in 1994 were not incredible I would say that Miranda Richardson is pretty terrific in Tom & Viv (1994).
This obviously is not a film that I believe deserves the praise it receives as it is horribly uneven and never makes you feel anything for it's characters. I generally love films that rest on their dialogue and performances but the writing and performances have to be good for this sort of film to work and here they clearly are not. Due to these simple facts I think I rest my case that this bizarre film should not have received any recognition especially when considering the fact that it was released in 1994, arguably one of the greatest years in film history.
A good film with great actors and a nice story.
This movie is disgusting it should be rated R, too much sex, it makes me want to puke, this is not a good movie ??
Loved it...again! Lange and Jones have terrific chemistry in this film. The story smolders around a strong-willed, glamorously aging wife and her strong-minded, ethically frustrated husband.
By its end, you can detect that the special elements of selfless love and deep conscience ignite into mature, enduring love, whether in the desert where a nuclear bomb is about to explode or within the housing barracks where a nuclear family fears to implode.
True love can rise from ashes of redemption like a Phoenix after flames of imperfection, mental illness, and loneliness have taken a toll on aging lives of loud and quiet desperation. A long-term love survived is not unlike the "blue sky" itself - as the eldest daughter explained about the invisible forces of power.
lange deserved her Oscar, in an otherwise sub-par film
I suppose Lange and Jones are good buy the movie itself leaves a lot to be desired. Between all the melodrama and the lukewarm nuclear testing B-plot there's very little here that's remotely interesting.
Sing my body electric Ms . Lange.
Could have been good, but ended up with me making silly commentary.
Tommy Lee Jones is just brilliant.