Lily Tomlin, Buck Henry, Julianne Moore, Madeline Stowe, Andi McDowell, Lori Singer, (jazz singer) Annie Ross, Tim Robbins, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Jack Lemmon, Lili Taylor, Matthew Modine, Fred Ward, Robert Downey Jr., Frances McDormand, Lyle Lovett and others.
The film is about a series of interlocking stories. How do they interlock?
Alright, Lily Tomlin is a waitress at a diner. Her husband (Tom Waits) comes in after finishing his limo shift only to see fishermen (Fred Ward, Buck Henry, Huey Lewis) eyeing his wife and getting her to pull out butter from a low fridge so they can check her ass out (she's not wearing panties). He leaves. When she finishes her shift, she'll drive home and, on the way, accidentally run into a little boy Casey. Casey is Andi McDowell's son. His birthday is Saturday and she orders a cake from baker Lyle Lovett. Casey will insist to Lily that he's fine and refuse her offer of a ride home. She will get home and tell Earl (her husband). They'll end up fighting. She doesn't like him drinking.
He leaves and she gets drunk and lies to her daughter Lili Taylor that Earl told her to lose weight. She'll tell the story about Casey again and how lucky she is because he didn't die.
Casey will die at the hospital. He will fall asleep at home and never wake up. Jack Lemmon plays his grandfather who never met him.
Lili Taylor is with Robert Downey Jr. who is a make up artist and always on the make. Her best friend is Jennifer Jason Leigh who makes money talking guys off on the phone. (Lili will even ask her if she's ever had a call from Bill -- Downey's character.) Jennifer's husband is Chris Penn who is always quiet but enraged.
He cleans pools for a living. While cleaning Andi's pool, Annie Ross (next door neighbor) will ask him to clean her pool. When he later does, Lori Singer (as Ross' daughter) will peel off her clothes and go skinny dipping.
The fishermen will discover a body on their fishing trip. A young woman killed violently. It will turn out that Chris Penn kills young women.
The police can't catch on because Tim Robbins is the police officer who, although married to Madeline Stowe, is sleeping with Frances McDormand and attempting to sleep with Anne Archer (Claire who makes a living dressing up as a clown). When not hitting on women or lying to his wife, Tim's busy taking Susie (the family dog) to another neighborhood and dumping the dog there. (He hates the dog.)
Madeline complains about her husband to her sister Julianne Moore who's married to Matthew Modine. At a chamber music concert, Moore and Modine see Alex Trebek and meet Fred Ward and Anne Archer. They ask Ward and Archer to dinner and they agree to do so after a fishing trip, Ward promising to bring some fresh fish that they can grill.
Modine is Casey's doctor at the hospital.
I could go on and on. Those are just some of the twists and turns.
The film's really involving and you'll love Andie's confrontation of Lovett near the end. She's really great in the film. Madeline Stowe is really great as well and very funny. Julianne Moore plays a sheltered type character and does it well but I'm used to seeing her wilder. (She has a 'nude' scene, bottom less, her skirt gets wine on it and she takes it off to clean. That scene's rather infamous online. Madeline Stowe is nude in a scene where Julianne paints her and Lori Singer is nude for the skinny dipping scene. I think that's all the nudity. If graphic talk offends you, Jennifer's phone work probably means you don't want to see the film.
This is one of my favorite Robert Altman films.
My top ten (in order) Altman films?
1) "The Player"
3) "A Prairie Home Companion"
4) "Come Back To The Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean"
6) "Short Cuts"
7) "The Company"
8) "The Long Goodbye"
10) "McCabe & Mrs. Miller"
And there are many other Altman films I love. ("Popeye," "A Wedding," "The Gingerbread Man," "Gosford Park," "Kansas City" and "Cookie's Fortune" among them.)
He probably is my favorite director of the 2nd half of the 20th century.
On movies, Ann and my list went up last night:
Thank you to everyone who e-mailed. I've only had time to read through seven so I'm only a third or so through. I will try to reply.
Thank you also to Top 10 Lists who left the following comment:
Please use the link if you like movies. I did and was really impressed with the work they do.
Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"