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The Return Of The Secaucus Seven
USA 1980
Directed by John Sayles
Running time 110 minutes
Rated M
4.5 stars

The premise of Sayles's debut feature, made in 1978 for US$45,000, of a group of 60s counter-culture veterans reuniting a decade later is best known in Lawrence Kasadan's The Big Chill (1983) but this, the original version, without the marquee names and the Top 40 soundtrack, is an understated and thoroughly entertaining film that effectively portrays the passage of time on the naiveté of youth. Sayles inter-relates his characters as much, if not more, in the editing (also done by Sayles) as in his winning script, cutting back and forth between different configurations that form and dissolve over the course of the weekend reunion. The casual tone which runs through all aspects of the film from the non-professional cast to the hand-held camera-work serves the script well, endowing the film with unforced authenticity yet also being disarmingly warm-hearted. BH

DVD Extras: None. One of a 3 DVD release along with Brother From Another Planet and Lianna.

Available from: Hopscotch Films and Entertainment




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