Monday, February 29, 2016

793. Rain Man

Rain Man
Directed by Barry Levinson

I suspect that this is the last Dustin Hoffman movie on The List, which is quite disappointing.  I think it actually might be the last Tom Cruise movie on The List too but I am less upset about that.  Oh no, horror of horrors.  I just remembered Magnolia.

Charlie Babbitt learns that his estranged father died and left the bulk of his estate to a mental institution that houses a brother he never knew he had.  Charlie is determined to get a hold of the money, since a recent business went south and he's desperate.  He meets his brother Raymond, an autistic savant.  Charlie takes Raymond out of the institution, hoping to gain custody of him thereby getting control of the money.  They travel to Los Angeles, but Raymond doesn't make for the easiest companion.

I am fighting to keep my eyes open, but I want to finish this post before I go to sleep.  I can't take the constant complaining that I don't post often enough!  Ahem...Anyway, I think the thing we all appreciate here is that the movie never enters sappy territory.  In fact, I read that the director wouldn't allow string accompaniment so that it wouldn't feel too sentimental.  And, of course, Dustin Hoffman is  perfect in his role.

Mental health issues can be a sticky topic for filmmakers, but they pretty much nailed here.  I mean, the mere fact that they had a character who stayed at a mental hospital and didn't end up murdering everyone was a step in the right direction.

RATING: ****-

Interesting Facts:

Many airlines deleted the scenes where Hoffman would talk about plane crashes for in flight viewing.


  1. I draw a line under Tom Cruise these days after being dragged along too many times to see the film where he actually acts with great depth (Vanilla Sky, Minority report, Mission Impossible) only to discover he was worse than ever.

    And yet... In roles where he is supposed to overact (Interview with a Vampire, Tropic Thunder) or those where he gets to play a shallow rich guy (Eyes Wide Shut, Rain Man) he's actually very good.

    1. I can't even talk about Vanilla Sky. That was Worse than Cocktail.

  2. I cannot say anything bad about the acting because it was phenomenal. However, I hated this movie. The character played by Tom Cruise was so mean.He used his brother who had no say in anything. I was just left with this terrible feeling of a mentally incompetent person being used terribly by his brother. Yech.

    1. So did you not think there was enough resolve? Interesting.

  3. No. I think Raymond went back to his life where he felt safe. (I hated his brother for making him leave.) I never felt that Tom Cruise learned anything about the experience. Now, I did see it a long time ago, but I still remember feeling as if he was just mean at the beginning and still mean, at the end.