Lost in America | Chicago Reader

Lost in America

In the tradition of Keaton, Tashlin, and Tati, Albert Brooks makes comedies that are not only brilliantly funny but also pursue a radical formal inventiveness: with its use of long takes, stripped-down imagery, and superrealism, Lost in America could pass for the work of Jean-Marie Straub, if Straub had a sense of humor. Brooks plays a hapless yuppie who, with his wife (Julie Hagerty), sets out on a belated cross-country journey to find himself (the spirit of Easy Rider is invoked as the couple set off in their Winnebago); they make it as far as Las Vegas, where Hagerty, finally snapping after a lifetime of obedient conformity, blows their entire $200,000 nest egg at a roulette wheel. With Michael Greene, Tom Tarpey, and Garry Marshall (1985). R, 91 min.

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