• U.S.

Critics’ Choice: Jun. 13, 1988

3 minute read


BIG. A twelve-year-old makes a wish to be big — and wakes up the next morning as Tom Hanks in a delightful comedy-fantasy about youth and age, and the differences between them.

A TAXING WOMAN. An immovable object in the shape of a greedy, tax-resisting real estate magnate meets the irresistible force of a zealous lady tax collector. Japan’s Juzo Itami (Tampopo) collects our interest and offers sly dividends.

WINGS OF DESIRE. An angel, tantalized by the pleading voices of humanity, falls in love and then to earth. A timeless fantasy in today’s West Berlin.


RUN-D.M.C.: TOUGHER THAN LEATHER (Profile). Rappers supreme, slippin’ closer to the old mainstream. Music still struts, though, and the braggadocious lyrics can be smart and funny.

ERIC CLAPTON: CROSSROADS (Polydor). Twenty-five years of mean guitar spread over 73 (count ’em) cuts. There’s genius, passion and elegance here — along with a fair bit of fluff.

STRAVINSKY: PETRUSHKA; Symphony in Three Movements (EMI). Britain’s Simon Rattle and his City of Birmingham Orchestra shake and roll their way through Stravinsky’s great ballet score, then toss in a dazzlingly precise symphony.


FREEDOMFEST (Fox network, June 11, 5 p.m. EDT). Whitney Houston and Harry Belafonte are among the gaggle of stars celebrating Nelson Mandela’s 70th birthday in a daylong concert from London’s Wembley Stadium.

DEAF AND BLIND (PBS, June 17, 18, 24, 25, 9 p.m. on most stations). Frederick Wiseman, America’s leading fly-on-the-wall filmmaker, observes an Alabama school for handicapped children in four separate documentaries.


SPOILS OF WAR. Kate Nelligan shows the dark side of an Auntie Mame-style mom in Michael Weller’s off-Broadway memory play, through June 12.

SPEED-THE-PLOW. Playwright turned Filmmaker David Mamet returns to Broadway and skewers Hollywood. Singer Madonna stars as a temp secretary with big plans.

TEN PERCENT REVUE. After stagings around the U.S., this glimpse of gay life in lilting songs and wry, affecting lyrics arrives off-Broadway.


CAPOTE: A BIOGRAPHY by Gerald Clarke (Simon & Schuster; $22.95). An engrossing, sympathetic account of the Tiny Terror of U.S. letters and of a life spent swimming in a sea of scandal.

QUINN’S BOOK by William Kennedy (Viking; $18.95). The author of the acclaimed Albany trilogy indulges himself in a picaresque romp through 19th century scenes, both real and riotously imagined. And yes, much of the fun occurs in Albany.

THE DEATH OF METHUSELAH AND OTHER STORIES by Isaac Bashevis Singer (Farrar, Straus & Giroux; $17.95). At 83, the Yiddish yarn spinner shows undiminished power to capture the peculiar din of human commerce.

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