Frankie and Johnny [1991]

Garry Marshall (Pretty Woman) directs the screen adaptation of Terence McNally's play Frankie and Johnny at the Clair de Lune, the story of a short-order cook (Al Pacino) who drives a waitress (Michelle Pfeiffer) crazy with his adamant courtship and mixed messages. The film is okay and not much more than that, the major stumbling block being Marshall's failure to scrub away enough star veneer on Pacino and Pfeiffer to accept them as minimum-wage drones with nowhere to go but toward each other. Fortunately, Marshall's feel for the texture offered by supporting players--Hector Elizondo as a café owner, Nathan Lane as Pfeiffer's inevitably gay neighbor-buddy, Kate Nelligan as another lonely waitress--keeps things interesting enough. --Tom Keogh

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