Accidental Tourist [1988]

Lawrence Kasdan adapted Anne Tyler's novel into this mopey comedy which, oddly enough, took the New York Film Critics Circle's best picture award (a case of strategic voting getting out of hand). William Hurt plays a depressed travel writer struggling to come to terms with his son's death. He buys a dog for companionship, then hires an eccentric dog trainer (Geena Davis, who won an Oscar for her role) to teach it to behave. She, in turn, teaches him to reconnect to life. But as he is beginning to admit his feelings for her to himself, he is blindsided by the return of his estranged wife (Kathleen Turner), who attempts to rekindle their marriage. A muffled, low-key affair--so low-key that it sometimes seems positively stationary. --Marshall Fine

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