Telling Lies in America

It's 1960 and Renfro's Hungarian immigrant teen determines to get into the pants of winsome co-worker Flockhart by having his name mentioned on the 'High School Hall of Fame' by Cleveland's top DJ, Billy Magic (Bacon). Whizz kid Billy is so impressed by Renfro's denial that he sent in several hundred nomination cards himself that he makes the lad his assistant. These are the days of payola, but young Master Sheltered Life is unaware of the significance of the envelopes he passes to his boss from sundry shady types. And since he and his dad (Schell) are applying for US citizenship, trouble with the police is the last thing he wants. Bacon revels in the greased back hair, flip on-air patter and ersatz R&B stylings on the soundtrack, but it's absolutely no surprise that his icon of cool turns out to be a dud. Director Ferland can only move the elements of the hackneyed plot (by Joe Eszterhas) into place and hope we like Bacon enough not to notice.

Release details

Duration: 101 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Guy Ferland
Screenwriter: Joe Eszterhas
Cast: Kevin Bacon
Brad Renfro
Maximilian Schell
Calista Flockhart
Paul Dooley
Jonathan Rhys Meyers

Average User Rating

3.1 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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John Cooper

This is a film dealing with important cultural and ethical issues, and despite a somewhat lacklustre screenplay, it still makes an impact. Kevin Bacon and Calista Flockhart are eminently watchable, though the lead actor ,( whose name escapes me,) lacks panache and despite a very earnest performance, can't convey the emotional complexity of this character . . .They really need someone like John Cusack . . . . What really works well in this movie is the soundtrack, which makes up for the turgid plot development . . . . . Nevertheless the film successfully deals with the nature of idealism and pragmaticism in American Culture . . . .George Washington was a really quite a shady character . . he had to be to get anywhere . .. . .