Shy People

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Time Out says

Worried by the precocious habits of her teenage daughter Grace (Plimpton), Cosmo journo Diana (Clayburgh) visits distant relations living a spartan existence down in the Louisiana bayou. At first, Konchalovsky's depiction of the culture clash is merely clichéd: while Diana and Grace worry about things like make-up, matriarch Ruth (Hershey) still sets a place at table for her long-lost outlaw husband and exercises an iron will over her own cretinous brood. Pretty soon, however, it's a case of loony tunes with a vengeance: an attack on her son by poachers provokes Ruth to take a rare trip to town, gun in hand; Grace's druggy seduction of a cousin under lock and key results in violence and panicky flight; Diana's excursion into the misty swamps in search of the girl courts alligators and ghosts. Proceeding from hackneyed Cold Comfort Farm territory to a grotesque Gothic nightmare, Konchalovsky's fatuous fable misfires on all counts: it remains melodramatic hokum, pure and simple-minded, the luminous photography and Hershey's sterling performance notwithstanding.
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Release details

UK release:

1987

Duration:

119 mins

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