Vicious Circle

  • 1996
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Action, Fantasy

Weighty metaphysical musings weigh down this grandiose action opus, in which an author's character exists in a dimension of his own. Struggling writer Rane Kendo (J.C. Whiteshirt) vacillates between upholding his literary vision and selling out for commercial success. Seduced by the bitch goddess of success, Rane allows Cashcart Enterprises to make a mass-market...read more

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Reviewed by Robert Pardi
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Weighty metaphysical musings weigh down this grandiose action opus, in which an author's character exists in a dimension of his own. Struggling writer Rane Kendo (J.C. Whiteshirt) vacillates between upholding his literary vision and selling out for commercial success. Seduced by the bitch goddess of success, Rane allows Cashcart Enterprises to make a mass-market TV series based on his novel. At first, Rane enjoys the perks associated with writing a series, but he grows sullen and depressed when he realizes how media magnate Milo Cashcart (Mark Gluckman) has homogenized his vision; Rane's poet of justice character, Carlos, has been transformed into a vigilante icon named Joe Bindo. Overnight, Bindo becomes a role model for anti-social teens and street crime soars. Rane's sell-out becomes intolerable when lead actor in the series, Al Vera (David Akin), starts behaving like Joe Bindo off camera as well as on. Ultimately, Rane pays a high price for his popularity. His sister, inner city social worker Hope (Samantha Dunn), becomes a casualty of the very mindless ghetto fury Rane has been espousing. Rane is castigated for his lack of integrity by an apparition of Carlos (Bradley Gregg) at the same time that law-and-order activist Dakota Scott (Susan Brigham) tries to sabotage Cashcart's violent output. Dakota install her girlfriend as a spy at Cashcart headquarters, then informs Rane that she holds him personally responsible for the Joe Bindo phenomenon. Both Dakota and the fictional Carlos preach ethics to Rane, but he may not have what it takes to stop the commercialized anarchy he inadvertently instigated. This film's big themes — the social responsibility of artists, dangers of role-playing by actors, barrio despair — are hopelessly undermined by director-producer Scott Farrell's ham-fisted filmmaking.

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  • Released: 1996
  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Weighty metaphysical musings weigh down this grandiose action opus, in which an author's character exists in a dimension of his own. Struggling writer Rane Kendo (J.C. Whiteshirt) vacillates between upholding his literary vision and selling out for commerc… (more)

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