Sidewinder’s View: “U-Turn” (1997)

From 1997, this morning’s movie.


Hadn’t seen it in nearly 20 years. I hated it back then, but thought perhaps the passage of time might have me feeling a bit kinder towards it. So I took a $20 gamble…


Nope. Still a piece of crap. Late Nineties Crap Noir. Very anti-audience. Oliver Stone riffs on John Dahl, a la psilocybin mushrooms.

Unlikeable characters. Dull storyline. Horribly off-key in terms of tone and humor. Distractingly schizophrenic music score by the usually brilliant Ennio Morricone. Initially, it annoyed me. Finally, it merely bored me.

Even if the editing, the ugly cinematography, and the goofy score hadn’t alienated me from the overall film, it just wasn’t that clever or interesting.

Originally, Bill Paxton had been set to play the Penn role…


…then backed out at the last minute. I’m not sure why, but, boy, did he make a wise decision.

This turkey earned less than $7 million at the box office back in ’97. Anyone who’s sat through it knows why.

If you’re in the mood for a similar story, only much better done, track down this movie instead, directed by John Dahl.

And don’t let the Nicolas Cage credit throw you off. This was made in the early Nineties, back when he was still prone to lending his talents to really interesting projects (as opposed to uninspiring paydays).