Devastated by President Kennedy's assassination, Dallas-based hairstylist Lurene Hallett boards a bus for the Washington funeral where she meets a perplexing father and his daughter who greatly impact her journey.
Michelle Pfeiffer stars in an Oscar®-nominated role as a Dallas hairstylist whose trip to President Kennedy's funeral takes a powerful turn. Devastated by the president's assassination, Lurene Hallett (Pfeiffer) boards a bus for the Washington funeral where she meets a perplexing father and his daughter who greatly impact her journey.
In 1963 Dallas, a Jackie Kennedy-obsessed beautician hopes to travel by bus to JFK's funeral, but gets involved instead with a troubled black man and his estranged little girl. Handsome production, nice details, but a curiously minor film that never quite kicks into gear. Occasionally, the way the racial prejudices are shown--from both black and white characters--is heavy-handed, though director Jonathan Kaplan does subtle work as well, performing a nimble balancing act while the screenplay works overtime being "heated" and "emotional". Michelle Pfeiffer's performance is alternately grating, unconventional, sweet and perplexing; we don't get to know her Lurene too well, and the actress has to rely on shtick for some of her major scenes; Dennis Haysbert as her traveling companion is a tower of quiet strength, and his handsome, aw-shucks smile isn't over-used. The plot is wrapped up neatly at the end, a tricky feat since the finale takes place some 12 months from the rest of the story--a gimmick that doesn't always work, but here it satisfies the viewer by showing lives changed and what might lay ahead. Potentially a heady mix of race-relations and something even deeper (and no-less complicated): forbidden love. Yet the picture somehow whittles down these complex issues into a road-movie formula. ** from ****
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