TRUE ROMANCE is about as good as contemporary Hollywood movies get. It boasts an engaging pair of leads (Christian Slater and Patricia Arquette); a snappy plot; dialogue that bristles with great one-liners; a gallery of accurately, hilariously observed minor characters; and a happy
ending complete with a slew of corpses. What more could you ask?
The story begins in Detroit, where Alabama Whitman (Arquette), a call-girl with three days' experience, bumps into--or, more exactly, tips a carton of popcorn over--lowly store clerk Clarence Worley (Slater) during a kung fu triple bill at Clarence's local theater. Within a matter of hours,
Alabama has renounced her nascent career and found true love; Clarence, meanwhile, has got himself into a bloody shootout with Alabama's former "manager" and found himself in possession of a suitcase full of cocaine--not to mention a really cheesy pair of sunglasses. The couple head off to LA in
an attempt to sell their loot that involves them with a supremely bad actor (Dick Ritchie), whom we first see auditioning for "T.J. Hooker"; an unctuous movie producer (Saul Rubinek); his fawning, preppy assistant (Bronson Pinchot); a band of pursuing mafia hit men; and a bunch of wisecracking LA
TRUE ROMANCE blends and recycles elements of scores of crime and road movies, from BONNIE AND CLYDE to BADLANDS, but it does so with enough energy and verve to create something entirely fresh and infectiously entertaining. The filmmakers demonstrate a passion for pop culture that gives everything
an air of comic-book unreality, while also making for some genuinely haunting moments. Highlights: the gloriously un-PC scene in which Clarence's dad (Dennis Hopper) faces off against a mob lieutenant (Christopher Walken); and the bloody, protracted motel-room battle (trimmed for theatrical
release, restored for video) between Alabama and a goon who--like the audience--gets more than he bargained for.
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- Released: 1993
- Rating: R
- Review: TRUE ROMANCE is about as good as contemporary Hollywood movies get. It boasts an engaging pair of leads (Christian Slater and Patricia Arquette); a snappy plot; dialogue that bristles with great one-liners; a gallery of accurately, hilariously observed min… (more)