Wishful Thinking (1998)
Directed by Ray Parks
Cast: James LeGros, Jennifer Beals, Drew Barrymore, Jon Stewart, Eric Thal.
1998 89 minutes
Rated: (for profanity and sexual situations).
Reviewed by Dustin Putman, July 19, 1999.
One of several movies Drew Barrymore made in 1997 that dodged the big screen and are only now reaching home video, Adam Park's "Wishful Thinking" is at least a step above "Best Men," which is also currently available on video, but that isn't saying much. The film is clearly an indie and not a big-budget studio picture, which may have been another reason it bypassed theaters, as it recounts the troubles that a close couple are having from three different points-of-view: Max (James LeGros), the jealous boyfriend; Elizabeth (Jennifer Beals), the misunderstood girlfriend; and Lena (Drew Barrymore), Max's co-worker at a movie theater who pines for him from afar. All three leads are charismatic (particularly Beals, who deserves more film roles), and the unorthodox structure is similar to "Pulp Fiction" and "Go," but the screenplay, including the dialogue, too often wanders into unnecessary silliness, and the ending leaves something to be desired. Jon Stewart, as a good-natured man Elizabeth falls for, is a standout. Too bad the movie itself isn't as entertaining as he is.
©1998 by Dustin Putman