Only the Lonely | Chicago Reader

Only the Lonely

A lonely Chicago cop (John Candy) who lives with his widowed mother (Maureen O'Hara), a female Archie Bunker type who dominates his life, falls in love with an introspective funeral parlor worker (Ally Sheedy) and tries to break free of his mother's hold. A loose 1991 remake of Marty by writer-director Chris Columbus (Home Alone) that proves that Candy is no Ernest Borgnine and Columbus neither a Paddy Chayefsky writer nor a Delbert Mann director, this mechanical piece of emotional manipulation is phoniest when it is making the biggest show of being “sincere.” While it's nice to see O'Hara back and in fine form, the film insists on reminding us of the worst aspects of her performances with John Ford rather than allowing her to work independent of this legacy. Typically, this movie is “brave” enough to indicate that the hero and heroine have premarital sex but too gutless to show them in bed together, and shameless enough to work in a product placement for Florsheim shoes in the midst of Candy's most emotional speech. Also on hand, and meant to be as cute as bugs, are Anthony Quinn, Jim Belushi, Kevin Dunn, Milo O'Shea, and Bert Remsen.

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