The most overwrought celebration of coming of age in the 1960s since Arthur Penn's catastrophic FOUR FRIENDS, this whiny transcription of one of the central character's memoirs is self-inflated and self-adoring. Choking on its own pretentiousness, this historical cavalcade compromises its
integrity by bracketing social consciousness with a slew of golden oldies on the soundtrack.
In the waning days of their senior year in high school, a close-knit group of friends contemplate their future in America while chowing down at Pop's hamburger joint. There, under the philosophical tutelage of disc jockey The Beard (Humble Harv Miller), the teens expound their hang-ups and drown
their contempt for authority figures like the school principal in chocolate malts. Although surfer Stick (Rick Schroder) embraces the hawk-like dreams of his dad and signs up for Vietnam, his classmates support the on-campus protest of Morrissey (Shon Greenblatt), whose brother was killed in the
Service. While Westwood High's newspaper editor Finnegan (Noah Wyle) overlooks signals sent by adoring honor student MaryBeth (Lucy Deakins), she spends her spare time pressuring her folks to send her to Berkeley.
Although Stick keeps his steady Tracy (Kristen Minter) at a safe emotional remove, his best pal Pirate (Dermot Mulroney) commits himself totally to his budding hippie girlfriend, Sunshine. Rounding out this microcosm of the love generation are Babette (Jill Schoelen) who aims to sing on the TV
show "Shindig," and Calvin (Kenny Ransom), the only black student at the high school. The Watts Riots becomes a catalyst, uniting the principals after Finnegan is attacked while helping Calvin try to reach his grandmother in the ghetto.
On the eve of the demolition of the teens' favorite hang-out, the police savagely beat up Morrissey, Pirate reacts apprehensively to news of Sunshine's pregnancy, Finnegan breaks up with Tracy, Stick has second thoughts about the military, and Babette gets her 15 minutes of fame on TV. A coda
reveals that the high schoolers never kept their promise of regularly keeping in touch.
This rebel-with-several-causes flick seethes with unearned indignation over assorted US government policy disasters of the 60s. Carrying solipsism to cosmic heights, THERE GOES MY BABY is unbearably irritating. The smug satisfaction of these canonized teens and the John Hughesian caricaturing of
their elders does not make for balanced drama. Appropriating key historic moments like the Watts Riots, this cloddish movie plugs up narrative leaks with bubble gum tunes. Instead of drawing us into the concerns of these socially committed rich kids, the film distances us with its black-and-white
attitudinizing. Kvetching and pouting like Beverly Hills adolescents who are flabbergasted that they've been loaned the Cadillac instead of the Porsche for the prom, the characters are all drawn one-dimensionally--an amazing achievement since the screenplay takes pains to present the narrator
MaryBeth's pals as real-life figures. Only the soundtrack gives solace to the audience forced to commiserate with all these future stars of tomorrow cast here as know-it-all moral arbiters.(Violence, adult situations, substance abuse, extreme profanity.)
Cast & Details See all »
- Released: 1994
- Rating: R
- Review: The most overwrought celebration of coming of age in the 1960s since Arthur Penn's catastrophic FOUR FRIENDS, this whiny transcription of one of the central character's memoirs is self-inflated and self-adoring. Choking on its own pretentiousness, this his… (more)