Review: ‘Now & Forever’

Childhood soulmates fight for their friendship in "Now & Forever," a preposterously convoluted and exasperatingly sappy saga from "Porky's" helmer Bob Clark. Item rightly belongs on tube and video, where over-plotting might actually work to its advantage.

Childhood soulmates fight for their friendship in “Now & Forever,” a preposterously convoluted and exasperatingly sappy saga from “Porky’s” helmer Bob Clark. Item rightly belongs on tube and video, where over-plotting might actually work to its advantage.

In Spencer, Saskatchewan, aspiring actress Angela (Mia Kirshner) and solid citizen John (Adam Beach), a Cree Indian, struggle to remain pals as their interests diverge. John is advised on his intense love for Angela by wise First Nation elder Ghost Fox (Gordon Tootoosis), while Angela rejects party girl mom Dori (Theresa Russell) in favor of cruel and loutish suitor T.J. (Gabriel Olds). When T.J. brutally attacks Angela, it’s John to the rescue, and, after a brief stint in Hollywood, Angela returns home and learns the mystical truth about her protector. Pic is overly dependent on heavy-handed, obvious narration by Beach (“Smoke Signals”), with extremes of serene spirituality and violent suspense never gelling in script that too often sounds like a series of greeting cards strung together. Tech credits are slick on picturesque Saskatoon-area locations, with tunes from Sarah McLachlan, Chantal Kreviazuk, Moist and Colin James livening things up somewhat.

Now & Forever

Canada

Production

An Edge Entertainment production. (International sales: Peace Arch Entertainment, Vancouver.) Produced by Leanne Arnott, David Doerksen. Directed by Bob Clark. Screenplay, Bill Boyle.

Crew

Camera (color), Jan Kiesser; editor, Lenka Svab; music, Paul Zaza; production designer, Wendy Morrow; costume designer, Koreen Heaver; sound (Dolby Digital), Michael Playfair. Reviewed at Montreal Film Festival (Panorama Canada), Aug. 27, 2001. Running time: 101 MIN.

With

Mia Kirshner, Adam Beach, Gordon Tootoosis, Theresa Russell, Gabriel Olds, Callum Keith Rennie, Simon Baker, Alexandra Purvis.
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