A road movie which teams three unlikelies - two female vagrants, one of them a spiky 15-year-old, and a washed-up ex-sergeant - and gives them no particular destination. As with many similar films, it substitutes character study for narrative. At first the film's low-key approach is deceptive. But for all the oblique humour, engaging peripheries, and surface toughness, Rafferty is a fundamentally warm-hearted movie which gradually beseeches us to love its oddball characters. During the last third, by which time the film has started to wear its heart on its sleeve, it all starts to come together; it's a long wait, though. Mackenzie Phillips, as the girl, gives a strong natural performance which offsets Arkin's studious acting. Really the entire film should have been about their relationship, rather than just the ending, which has them exiting for Uruguay just as things were getting interesting.
Rafferty and the Gold Dust Twins
Cast and crew
Charlie Martin Smith
Harry Dean Stanton