Stage play in close-up (Stephen Metcalfe's Strange Snow -- and whoever retitled it gets an "F" in spelling), about a reunion of two Vietnam vets and the interest one of them takes in the other one's sister. (It's a different-worlds romance, joining the worlds of the grease monkey and the Biology teacher: "You're built like a brick shithouse" is a compliment in the man's world.) Robert De Niro, Ed Harris, and Kathy Baker bear up very well under the magnifying glass, but the play doesn't. You especially want to stand back, or leave the building entirely, when the alcoholic former football star smashes the school trophy case (during the Spring Prom, for good measure). Directed by David Jones. 1989.

Duncan Shepherd

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