Director: John Turturro
Screenwriters: Brenda Goodman, John Turturro

Institute History

  • 1993 Sundance Film Festival


Customarily when an actor turns to directing, one expects that the production that he creates will be generally conventional, often theatrical or wordy, and devoid of visual style or aesthetic invention. Worst of all, if that actor chooses to play the lead, the film almost always suffers from terrible self-indulgence, which is why it is so pleasurable to praise the originality and creativity which infuse John Turturro's Mac. This film is impressive not only at the level of performance, where Turturro's depiction of his immigrant construction worker father is rich, complex and multilayered, but especially in the structuring of the tale, in the choices made as the story develops, and in the remarkable emotive power of the dramatic resolution.

Turturro's portrait of his father is clearly a labor of love, but it is neither fawning nor sentimental. Rather it is a marvelously detailed and real portrayal which includes warts and blemishes, and thus produces in the audience a wrenching ambivalence and ultimately a passionate understanding of the values of a man whose search for meaning comes from his perfectionism and his sense of craft. Mac is respectful of an era's attitudes and ambience, and evidences remarkable control and vision. Turturro's homage is all the more meaningful for the ambiguity it sustains in our appreciation of the qualities and contradictions of a man and a time whose passing leaves us poorer. With a terrific cast and a wonderful score, this film embodies the distinctiveness and power of independent cinema.

Thursday Jan 28 8:30 pm
Prospector Square Theatre

Friday Jan 29 1:00 pin
Egyptian Theatre

Saturday Jan 30 8:30 pm
Tower Theatre. Salt lake City


— Geoffrey Gilmore

Screening Details

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