Film Scouts Reviews

"The Bridges of Madison County"

by Eleanor Ringel

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The only thing wrong with Clint Eastwood's radiantly romantic movie is Robert James Waller's relentlessly excessive best-seller. And even then, it's no contest. Eastwood and co-star Meryl Streep perform alchemy here; while adhering to whatever it was that sold 5.6 million copies of Waller's book, they've transformed the material into something far better. Yeah. it's still a weepie, but whatta weepie. Even if you didn't read the book, you probably already know the story: unfulfilled farmer's wife (Streep) is left home alone while the husband and kids go to the state fair. Along comes roving photographer hunk (Eastwood) and the rest is...well, how about Last Tango in Iowa? The movie works because the stars work. To paraphrase what someone once said about Astaire and Rogers, he gives her sex and she gives him class. Together, they're the best thing to happen to Iowa since Kevin Costner built that baseball diamond in his cornfield.

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