Obscure cult filmmaker Paul Williams produced, directed, and stars in this archly reflexive left-wing revenge fantasy about a conspiracy to assassinate a Republican President.
Inspired by a news clip of Tom Hayden charging conspiracy in the deaths of the Kennedys and Martin Luther King, big-time movie director Arthur Gwenlyn (Williams) ad-libs an idea for a film, "Crosspoint," about a left-wing plot to murder a right-wing president. He enlists the aid of Victor Duggo
(James Andronica), an ex-Marine sniper in Vietnam and the subject of a book Gwenlyn was once supposed to direct. As Gwenlyn sets about making his picture, "Crosspoint" becomes a film within the film. He approaches name actor Robert Davi (best known for DIE HARD, in a cameo as himself), who ends up
contributing money instead. As a cast, he assembles an ex-black militant, various reformed student radicals, Arab religious zealots, and an actor with AIDS to play the assassin (since the script mandates a willingness to exchange his own life for the President's).
Real-life events and fictional scenarios collide as the film and/or conspiracy progresses. Gwenlyn's wife Elizabeth (Leslie Bevis) suspects that he may have a more sinister agenda, and passes her suspicions to the Secret Service. The ex-black militant starts imagining himself a patsy. A woman
stationed on the motorcade route signals the riflemen by opening an umbrella emblazoned with a Yale logo. Duggo writes a love letter to his wife, implying a plot of his own. The Arabs kill a security guard and produce a radio-controlled, bomb-carrying toy helicopter. Elizabeth discovers a photo
left behind by the Arabs; when she takes it to them, and Arthur follows her, the Arabs gun them both down. Duggo shoots the Arabs--his plan all along. The Secret Service shoots Duggo. Finally a director yells "Cut!" They're all actors, making a movie about making a movie about shooting the
A spoof of assassination buffery might sound fresh, especially in the wake of Oliver Stone's turgid JFK, but in fact far better films--notably Brian De Palma's GREETINGS (1969) and William Richert's WINTER KILLS (1979)--have already covered this ground. Designed as an actor's improv by Williams
and Andronica, the film is messy, self-indulgent, and only rarely witty. Williams was briefly famous as the director of countercultural low-budget films like OUT OF IT (1969) and THE REVOLUTIONARY (1970). After playing the festival circuit under the title CROSSPOINT, this come-back film opened
briefly in a few Southern cities.(Violence, adult situations, profanity.)
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- Released: 1994
- Rating: NR
- Review: Obscure cult filmmaker Paul Williams produced, directed, and stars in this archly reflexive left-wing revenge fantasy about a conspiracy to assassinate a Republican President. Inspired by a news clip of Tom Hayden charging conspiracy in the deaths of t… (more)