Friday, January 3, 2014

Rain Man

The other night I watched Rain Man, a movie I had seen in the late 80s. I'm pretty sure I loved it when it first came out. This time around I liked it okay -- I thought Tom Cruise and Dustin Hoffman gave terrific performances. The story is about a high strung materialistic yuppie who discovers he has a brother with autism who has inherited their father's millions. To get the money he takes Raymond out of the institution and embarks on a road trip back to LA. Raymond is severely limited in his ability to cope with the change, which he doesn't understand, and is traumatized by the experience. However, Cruise's character begins to really care about another human being and is changed by the experience.

The portrayal of Raymond was very moving. He was unable to connect with others, but conveyed a sweet vulnerability that made me care about him.

Peripheral was his relationship with his girlfriend, which seemed tacked on and unnecessary. There was a weird scene with her and Raymond in an elevator in a hotel in Las Vegas that seemed out of sync with the movie. I think it would have been stronger if she had been cut out entirely.

Oh, and they make it seem like counting cards at Blackjack is illegal, but I found out that's a myth.

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