Mean Season [1985]

Genre: Crime, Thriller
Kurt Russell and Mariel Hemingway star in this well-above-average thriller. Mean Season offers plenty of suspense as well as an interesting take on the role of the press in sustaining the very violence it covers. Russell plays Malcolm Anderson, a burned-out journalist who never got the big career-making story he always wanted. Just as he's about to give up and move to the idyllic countryside, the big story comes to him--in the form of a serial killer with a fixation for Anderson himself. As Anderson's fame grows, he starts getting hounded by his brethren, the press. Add this to the assorted problems that go along with having a serial killer a little too interested in one's personal life, and you've got major trouble. Director Phillip Borsos does a nice job of conveying information through quick visuals, and even sets up some moments of eerie beauty, such as the shot of a victim's apartment, covered in a snowfall of pillow feathers. More importantly, Borsos knows he's making a thriller and makes sure to have fun doing it: there are plenty of loooooong shadows and a few good jolts along the way. As Anderson's girlfriend, Mariel Hemingway is essentially asked to play bait, but manages to flesh out what could easily have been a cardboard character. --Ali Davis

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