Blast From The Past

He's hopelessly naïve, coddled for 35 years by loving and decidedly old-fashioned parents. She's wise beyond her years, the cynical product of a broken home and the MTV school of manners and mores. So in the topsy-turvy logic of romantic comedies, Adam (Brendan Fraser) and Eve (Alicia Silverstone) are made for each other. Convinced that atomic devastation...read more

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Reviewed by Maitland McDonagh
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He's hopelessly naïve, coddled for 35 years by loving and decidedly old-fashioned parents. She's wise beyond her years, the cynical product of a broken home and the MTV school of manners and mores. So in the topsy-turvy logic of romantic comedies, Adam

(Brendan Fraser) and Eve (Alicia Silverstone) are made for each other. Convinced that atomic devastation was imminent, Adam's parents (Christopher Walken, Sissy Spacek) took to their deluxe bomb shelter (all the comforts of home, from Dr. Pepper to Perry Como!) at the height of the Cuban Missile

Crisis, when suburban Southern California was still a haven of neatly trimmed lawns and polite, well-scrubbed children. Thirty-five years later, Pop ventures outside the shelter to see what's left of society, and quickly retreats: The modern-day San Fernando Valley looks to him like a genuine

post-apocalyptic hellhole, crawling with polymorphously perverse mutants and marauding gangs. Unfortunately, the shelter's supplies are depleted and Adam is getting antsy about the conspicuous lack of female companionship underground, so his parents reluctantly send him out to look for grub and

girls. Electronic key cards, freeway driving and predatory modern girls are just a few of the things that confuse Adam, but his sweet nature and refreshingly goofy charm make a big impression on the ladies, and mom's ballroom dancing lessons pay off big time at the chichi neo-swing club. On the

plus side, the young leads are a very handsome pair: Silverstone's Eve has a blue-ribbon pout, and Fraser quickly surmounts Adam's fashion-free upbringing and starts looking like a Hugo Boss model -- do we have to mention the part played by Eve's inevitable gay roommate in the transformation? But

this bizarre hybrid of romantic comedy cliches and less-than-subtle social commentary defeats their best efforts to make it sparkle.

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