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FOREVER LULU (CRAZY STREETS) (director/writer: Amos Kollek; cinematographer: Lisa Rinzler; editor: Jay Freund; music: Paul Chihara; cast: Hanna Schygulla (Elaine Hines, Deborah Harry (Lulu), Alec Baldwin (Buck), Paul Gleason (Robert), Dr. Ruth Westheimer (Herself), Amos Kollek (Larry), Charles Ludlam (Harvey); Runtime: 86; MPAA Rating:R; producer: Amos Kollek; Tri-Star Pictures; 1987)
“It’s tailor-made for those who like watching train wrecks.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

Israeli director Amos Kollek (“Goodbye New York”/”Queenie in Love”/”Bridget”) helms this dim-witted comedy. Everything about it is revolting: the acting, the direction, the premise and the production values. It’s tailor-made for those who like watching train wrecks.

Elaine Hines (Hanna Schygulla) is a German-born 40ish aspiring writer, who moves to New York City and works at a secretary temp job for a toilet seat company to pay the bills. Unable to get a serious book published about her life, Elaine moonlights writing scripts for porn films. Things turn more sour when Elaine’s Lower East Side apartment is robbed, she’s fired and her literary agent (Amos Kollek) dumps her. Then through a bizarre chain of events the innocent Elaine mistakenly holds up a rich couple and winds up with a mink coat. After being involved with drugs and killers, Elaine achieves sudden fame and fortune as a best-selling author. This leads to an appearance on sex therapist Dr. Ruth Westheimer’s TV show, which makes for some more embarrassingly crude comedy.

The storyline is implausible and the actors seem to have blank expressions going through the motions. It was meant to be hip but the creators are anything but hip. Alex Baldwin makes his acting debut as a policeman who falls for Elaine; Paul Gleason plays, with a fair amount of dash, Elaine’s married former lover; Deborah Harry, Blondie frontwoman, got top billing but only has a small part; while Charles Ludlam is pathetic playing an obnoxious porn director and, the director, Amos Kollek, is dreadful as the smug literary agent.


Dennis Schwartz: “Ozus’ World Movie Reviews”