After Hours (1985) 4.24/5 (3)


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Rating: The Good – 79.7
Genre: Comedy
Duration: 97 mins
Director: Martin Scorsese
Stars: Griffin Dunne, Rosanna Arquette, Verna Bloom

Griffin Dunne is Paul Hackett, a young man we assume is stuck in a bit of a rut. One night as he sits in a coffee shop reading Tropic of Cancer, he meets and obtains the phone number of an interesting young woman (played by Rosanna Arquette). When he gets home he calls her up and accepts an invitation to go over to the loft she is staying in despite the late hour. From there on, the night slowly descends into the type of free-form chaos that seemed so overtly missing from his life. The only problem is he cannot escape it. Martin Scorsese was delving into somewhat new territory here but as it turned out, his unique and brave style was the perfect match for Joseph Minion’s fascinating script and together they crafted a lovely, easy-going minor philosophical adventure. The many and varied characters Hackett bumps into while out that night are all utterly fascinating in a very narrow sort of way and some are outright hilarious. The scenarios that emerge, outrageous though they may be, seem to grow so organically from the story that here the unusual truly does become the usual. And that is Scorsese’s great achievement, to make the outrageous seem so humdrum, the lunatics so normal, and ultimately the most normal of people (in this case Hackett) so strange. After Hours is a monument to the strange little world we all inhabit and it is an eminently enjoyable film-going experience. It might not sound like your type of thing, but give it a go and you might just find yourself going back to it again and again.

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