BetteBack February 13, 1987: Outrageous Fortune Review

Huntingdon Daily News
February 13, 1987


“Whether to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, or to take arms against a sea of troubles …”

Hamlet said it, Shakespeare wrote it, but Shelley Long and Bette Midler have to endure it. And this “sea of troubles” is more like an ocean of orchestrated oddballs.

From fables to farces, nothing in all of Shakespeare’s vast collection of writings ever matched the sheer lunacy of this epic adventure.

Midler is quickly becoming a veteran of cinematic oddball antics. In films such as “Jinxed,” “Down and Out in Beverly H*s” and the -pnenornenaNy successful “Ruthless People,” the Divine Mis:- M amply demonstrates .

Here she teams with Long, who plays an aspiring actress studying at the best schools with the best teachers. She’s weH read in the classics and has committed to memory the best of Strindberg and crucial passages of Chekhov. She studies bafet and excels in class. When she gets a chance to study with the great Russian teacher Stanislav Korzenowski, she jumps at the opportunity and spends weeks preparing tor the audition.

White she is nervously awaiting the audition, in strops Midler, and when Midler strolls, everyone knows it. She’s street-wise and fearless. No matter that she hasn’t rehearsed anything. She’ll “improvise something.”

But test you think this film is about struggling Mew York actresses, tet me.list some of the other ingredients: Russian spies, the CIA, art explosion, a love triangle, a via) of highly
toxic defoliant capable of kitting aN plant life in an area the size of California, a ’60s hippie, Indians, bows and arrows … and I could go on.

Midter and Long are the zaniest duo to hit the screen in a long, long time. And they do hit the screen with the power of Leslie Dixoo’s outrageous script, a chase film/farce with no holds barred. It stretches aR limits of credulity, but when the laughs are this loud and long, even Shakespeare himsett wouldn’t mind.

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