Ethan Hawke is a man filled to the brim with street cred. He's made his mark in the worlds of Disney, Richard Linklater, Denzel Washington, Shakespeare, sci-fi, and trendy '90s misery. So anything that he signs onto has an immediate hint of promise. His newest venture is not in movies, though: the Hawke is changing his flights to television.
Hawke and Law & Order: Criminal Intent's headcase headliner Vincent D'Onofrio will be teaming up in a new crime drama series, Blue Tilt. In the series, Hawke and D'Onofrio will be partnered homicide detectives, dealing both with their strenuous jobs and their equally trying personal lives. One of the characters will be a divorcee, and one a married man. Both are fathers.
The title of the series suggests further internal unrest than paying alimony or marital disputes. The phrase "Blue Tilt" refers to the mental state a homicide detective can reach, as a result of his often traumatizing profession, wherein he becomes a danger to himself or others, and is therefore mandated to undergo psychiatric observation. It is not yet reported if this practice will be a recurring theme in the show, but it can be assumed that we might see Hawke and D'Onofrio taking part (willingly or otherwise) in some head-shrinking.
The series will be written by Chris Brancato (creator of First Wave, and occasional writer for the Law & Order franchise, The Outler Limits and Beverly Hills 90210, among many other series, as well as the film Species II), and will air on NBC.
Meet Beverly D'Onofrio (Drew Barrymore) a woman on her way to getting her first book published. She is driving with her grown son Jason (Adam Garcia) back to her hometown in Connecticut for the first time in many years. Together they begin discussing Beverly's book a memoir of her life. Jumping back to 1968 we meet Beverly as a bright 15-year-old girl with a talent for writing. She dreams about going to college and getting out of her small-town existence. But like most teenagers she and her best friend Fay (Brittany Murphy) also have a penchant for boys--except Bev picks them from the wrong side of the tracks. Inevitably Bev meets Ray (Steve Zahn) a sweet guy but a total screw-up gets pregnant and has a son. Now she's stuck..and stuck..and still stuck---unhappy and taking it out on her child throughout the years. On this road trip she comes to grips with what she's done with her life and her son's.
Barrymore has certainly come into her own as an actress choosing projects that highlight her sweet comedic talent such as The Wedding Singer and Never Been Kissed. In Boys she goes for the melodramatic and although she has some great moments the material actually brings her down. Her Beverly is an annoying selfish woman who never really shows much affection towards her son--not what you would call a flattering portrayal in any way. However some of the supporting performances are outstanding including James Woods- as Beverly's cop father and Murphy as the best friend who is about as loyal as it comes. Zahn really stands out as Ray the good-hearted but drug-addicted father. His tender scene with his son before he leaves the house for good was heartfelt and real. If anyone is to get an Oscar nomination from this film it may be him.
Maybe it was director Penny Marshall's intention but the movie makes you feel like you too are stuck as you watch one opportunity after another pass Beverly by. It was exhausting and hardly worth the time spent in the theater. Marshall has had such a nice touch with comedies before such as Big and A League of Their Own but she can definitely turn on the schmaltz when she wants to and she does it in spades in Boys. Of course the funny moments were wonderful. Barrymore getting ready for a big scholarship interview with her adorable three-year-old watching her was fun but you've seen most of it in the trailer. Perhaps the fault lies not with Marshall or Barrymore but rather with the plodding script which basically goes nowhere. Once again Hollywood has decided to make a movie that would have been better suited for television.