Powerhouse film performer capable of intensely moving work who has gone from strength to strength during a colourful film career, and who has drawn much media attention for his stormy private life and political viewpoints, California-born Sean Penn is the second son of actress Eileen Ryan & director Leo Penn, also brother of Chris Penn. He first appeared in roles as strong-headed or unruly youths such as the military cadet defending his academy against closure in Taps (1981), then as fast-talking surfer stoner Jeff Spicoli in Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982).
Fans and critics were enthused about his obvious talent and he next contributed a stellar performance alongside Timothy Hutton in the Cold War spy thriller The Falcon and the Snowman (1985), followed by a teaming with icy Christopher Walken in the chilling At Close Range (1986). The youthful Sean then paired up with his then wife, pop diva Madonna in the woeful, and painful, read more
There are flaws here, but they're are completely overpowered by the film's strengths. I saw it for the first time months ago, but I can still recall the power of the experience. This is perhaps the final great performance of Nicholson's career but his achievement is just one in a series. A haunting film.
This is some really inconsistant direction. Some great sequences interupted by pathetic shenanigans like quick bouncing zooms, unrelated closeup edits, cliche use of sound to tell story and overuse of eye line edits. The script's actually not terrible, but how the hell did these actors... Oh wait, Sean Penn. The last act is sort of interesting. Aaron Eckhart's character is a shallow monster. Interestingly, these are similar issues seen in Nicholson's first attempt at directing "Drive, He Said."