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‘Dream a Little Dream’

By Richard Harrington
Washington Post Staff Writer
March 06, 1989

 


Director:
Marc Rocco
Cast:
Jason Robards Jr.;
Corey Feldman;
Meredith Salenger;
Piper Laurie
PG-13
Children under 13 should be accompanied by a parent


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Folks staggering out of "Dream a Little Dream" may well wonder what the heck they just saw (if it weren't a PG-13 film, they'd be wondering what the hell). Dazed and confused, they'll have absolutely no idea what it was about, but then, neither did director Marc Rocco. By comparison, "Blue Velvet" is a model of lucidity.

To make this short -- which, after two excruciating hours, is something Rocco should consider if he ever gets a chance to make another film -- stupid kid bumps heads with an oddball older couple during the latter's transcendental experiment (it looks like tai-chi). Somehow they get mixed up, though not as much as the script. There's also a local teen goddess, parents who just don't understand, and low jinks at the high school. Yes, we've seen this before, but never this badly done. "You have to be able to suspend your normal patterns of thinking," the old man says at one point, and the filmmakers apparently took that advice to heart.

"Dream a Little Dream" stars Corey Feldman, looking ever more the pudgy teen mutation of Uncle Fester. He's amusing in limited -- very limited -- doses, but in no way capable of carrying a film, unless it's in a canister. Feldman does get some help from Corey Haim, an equally obnoxious teen twerp with whom he's sharing his third film. Apparently Hollywood sees them as the Abbott and Costello of the Clearasil set. Nobody else will.

Jason Robards and Piper Laurie play the older couple and spend most of the film in a daze. Who can blame them? In something like this it's probably better to feign amnesia from the start.

Though Rocco has absolutely no idea how to make a film, he does have some sense of suspense -- just when you think it can't get worse, it does. Plot? That's something "Dream a Little Dream" should be buried in. You could call it a nightmare but that would be an insult to Elm Street.

   
© Copyright 1999 The Washington Post Company

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