Critics' Corner
Desson Howe - Weekend section, "Muttery method acting."

Stephen Hunter - Style section, "It never quit makes the case for the victimhood of its victims."

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'Mad City'

Scene from this movie Fallen-from-grace TV journalist Max Brackett (Dustin Hoffman) is a pain in the neck to his colleagues at a Madeline, Calif., affiliate. A former investigative reporter, he was dumped from the network because he embarrassed CTN anchor Kevin Hollander on a live broadcast. He’s banished to the global village equivalent of Podunk, scrambling after anything that moves -- and little ever does.

But on a routine report about the effects of budget cuts on a local museum, his prayers are answered. Sam Baily (John Travolta), a security guard, and a victim of those budget cuts, returns to plead his case with director Mrs. Banks. He decides to bring a shotgun and a bag of dynamite. He doesn’t mean to use them, but he really wants the snooty Mrs. Banks to listen. -- Desson Howe
Rated PG-13

Director: Constantin Costa-Gavras
Cast: John Travolta; Dustin Hoffman;
Mia Kirshner; Alan Alda;
Robert Prosky; Blythe Danner;
William Atherton; Ted Levine
Running Time: 1 hour, 54 minutes
Filmographies: John Travolta; Dustin Hoffman;
Alan Alda