Review: ‘Enormous Changes at the Last Minute’

Enormous Changes at the Last Minute is an enormously uneven trilogy of modern urban woman's dilemma in the precarious area of relationships with men [from stories by Grace Paley].

Enormous Changes at the Last Minute is an enormously uneven trilogy of modern urban woman’s dilemma in the precarious area of relationships with men [from stories by Grace Paley].

Pic is first fictional feature for the three producer/directors, Mirra Bank, Ellen Hovde, and Muffie Meyer, all film editors. First vignette [directed by Hovde and Meyer] pits Virginia (Ellen Barkin) as a housewife with three kids who is newly deserted by her husband. Barkin succumbs to the advances of a former boyfriend (now married with kids), who is also the landlord’s son.

In second entry, Faith (Lynn Milgrim) makes a trek to visit her artsy, literary parents in an old-age Jewish residence, to tell her father that she’s separated from her husband Ricardo. This is the weakest and least successful section, failing to capture the potential intimacy and poignancy of the encounter. [Seg, by Bank and Hovde, was shot earliest, in 1978.]

Alexandra (Maria Tucci) is a middle-aged, divorced, social worker who has a ludicrous affair with frenetic cab driver/punk rocker Dennis (Kevin Bacon). When Alexandra becomes pregnant by Dennis she vehemently decides to go it alone and raise it herself. Dennis is hurt and confused by his forced exclusion from the event. [This seg directed by Bank.]

Enormous Changes at the Last Minute

Production

Ordinary Lives. Director Mirra Bank, Ellen Hovde, Muffie Meyer; Producer Mirra Bank; Screenplay John Sayles, Susan Rice; Camera Tom McDonough; Editor Mirra Bank, Ellen Hovde, Muffie Meyer; Music Peter Link

Crew

(Color) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1983. Running time: 110 MIN.

With

Ellen Barkin Kevin Bacon Maria Tucci Lynn Milgrim Sudie Bond Ron McLarty
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