Mortal Passions

Director: Andrew Lane

Institute History

  • 1990 Sundance Film Festival


Had Mortal Passions been made in the late forties, and shot in black and white on the sleazy back streets of Los Angeles, by now it would have assumed something like cult status. Indeed this stylish, convoluted psycho sexual thriller, romping along with all the amoral energy of its genre, recalls everything that s film noir from Out of the Past to Body Heat.

The plot-driven by a "MacGufiin" bundle of cash-is too twisted to describe (or even to keep up with!). Devilishly, it involves a passive husband, a violent black-sheep brother, a streetwise laver, an adulterous wife, an innocent friend and a murdered psychiatrist. Their fatal interactions are sometimes spontaneous, sometimes calculated, but always wildly combustible.

Mortal Passions might best be described as a weird cross between Valley Girl (which its director, Andrew Lane, coproduced) and Patti Rocks (from its producer, Gwen Field): suburban reality meets sexual confusion, aided by a healthy dose of greed and violence.

With their penchant for film noir, the French awarded Mortal Passions the Coup de Coeur of the 1989 Deauville Film Festival.

Sunday, January 21 4:00 p.m.
Prospector Square Theatre

Monday, January 22 10:00 a.m.
Egyptian Theatre

Wednesday, January 24 1:00 p.m.
Prospector Square Theatre

Saturday, January 27 7:15 p.m.
Holiday Village Cinema II


— Tony Safford

Screening Details

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